Latest Newsletter - 15th July 2020
It was a good feeling to start public worship again on Sunday morning. Nineteen of us gathered at St Dunstan’s with others joining us online. Those who were there enjoyed being back in church and have importantly given me feedback that they felt safe. We will offer one public service each week between now and the end of August, which will be either at St Dunstan’s or St Oswald’s. Our churches will continue to open for private prayer, with St Alban’s aiming to open from Sunday 2nd August. I remind you all that we are one parish and everyone is welcome at our services, no matter which church you usually attend.
We will review the situation on my return from leave towards the end of August. I hope that we will be able to offer more public from September onwards. I would express thanks to all our churchwardens for their help in allowing us to begin to open up.
As we begin to return to public worship, I wonder what your expectations are? I have been involved in two meetings with colleagues over the past week which have involved discussions about what we have experienced in the past months. Whether we like it or not, the pandemic has forced change on us. To paraphrase Bishop Jonathan, the chances of going back to things exactly as they were are minimal – in fact to think that they will do so is fantasy. Rather than assuming that our aim should be to return to the pattern of worship and activities we had, we need to take time to reflect on where we are and how we can take our parish forward in an agile, responsive, and above all sustainable way.
Whilst we have lost many things, especially being gathered in person, we should not think of this situation as entirely negative. Moreover, many positive things have happened since our churches had to close their doors in March which we should not let go of. We have opened up the possibilities of online worship and other activities, such as our discussion groups. Our communication has improved with extensive use of the website, social media, and regular newsletters. The children’s services and Zoom Sunday School we have offered have engaged with children in a different way. We have been compelled to act more as a team than as three distinct churches – although there is undoubtedly a long way to go here.
Above all, as we move forward into a new way of structuring our mission and ministry, we need to make sure that what we do is focussed less on keeping church going as we have known it and more on the building of God’s Kingdom here in Cheam. There is much for us to ponder.
A Prayer For Returning To Our Churches
O God from whom all blessings flow, I turn to you in gratitude for our churches
of St Dunstan, St Oswald, and St Alban;
for every faithful footstep taken within its walls, and every petition prayed, for every story shared, the ordinary and the extraordinary from generation to generation.
Thank you that in the silence of our absence
you were still here, as well as with your people.
As we begin to return, grant to us all the wisdom to stay safe, the comfort of your peace and joy in coming home.
Now these doors are opening once again let your Spirit flow out of all who come here,
bringing life, hope and healing to our community. Amen.
With love and prayers to you all,
The Reverend Dr Nicholas Peacock
Team Rector, Cheam Team Ministry
Worship Coming Up in July and August
This pattern of services will be reviewed in late August. Depending on circumstances, we hope to be able to offer a fuller schedule of services from September onwards. If you wish to attend any of the services in person, you will need to book in advance. Details of how to book are below. Please note that there will be no Wednesday service on 29th July, 5th August, 12th August, and 19th August.
Wednesday 15th July
11.00am Eucharist (BCP) YouTube only
Sunday 19th July
9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 6 YouTube and In Person at St Dunstan’s
Wednesday 22nd July
11.00am Eucharist for Mary Magdalene YouTube only
Sunday 26th July
9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 7 YouTube and In Person at St Dunstan’s
Sunday 2nd August
10.00am Service of the Word for Trinity 8 In Person only at St Oswald’s
Sunday 9th August
10.00am Service of the Word for Trinity 9 In Person only at St Oswald’s
Sunday 16th August
10.00am Service of the Word for Trinity 10 In Person only at St Oswald’s
Sunday 23rd August
9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 11 YouTube and In Person at St Dunstan’s
Wednesday 26th August
11.00am Eucharist (BCP) YouTube only
Sunday 30th August
9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 12 YouTube and In Person at St Dunstan’s
Booking for Public Worship
We are running a booking process for our public worship on Sunday mornings.
If you would like attend one of the services at St Dunstan’s (19th July, 26th July, 23rd August, and 30th August), please let our Parish Administrator, Louise, know by either telephoning 07928 833324 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org by midday on the Friday before each Sunday service.
If you would like to attend one of the services at St Oswald’s (2nd August, 9th August, and 16th August), please let Bryan Hopper, churchwarden, know by either texting 07787 755142 or emailing email@example.com.
If there are no more places available, you will be offered a place for the following week. Unfortunately, if you do not book a place, you will not be able to attend.
Churches Opening for Private Prayer
We will continue to open our churches for ‘private prayer’ as follows:
St Oswald's will be open:
· 10.00am-11.30am on Sundays
St Dunstan's will be open:
· 11.30am-12.30pm on Sundays
· 11.00am-12.00pm on Wednesdays
St Alban's will be open:
· 10.00am-11.30am on Sundays from 2nd August
Please see the website for information on what to expect if you would like to attend.
We are looking for volunteers to supervise the churches during the opening times. If you are interested in helping out, please contact the office (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Details for accessing Zoom coffee on Sunday 19th July are below. Please contact the Office for the password.
Meeting ID: 884 0628 5452
Rector’s Leave and Office Summer Closure
The Rector will be on leave from 27th July, returning on Sunday 23rd August.
The Parish Office will closed throughout August, although emails and telephone messages will still be picked up.
Visits and Telephone Conversations
If you would like to receive a visit from the Rector, he is happy to meet with parishioners following the current guidelines. At present, this means he can meet with people outside. Clearly this will depend significantly on the weather! Please email the Rector directly (email@example.com) or contact the office. Alternatively, if you would like to be contacted for a conversation, please call or email the Parish Office. We are happy to offer practical advice (where possible) or simply have a friendly chat.
If you would like us to pray for someone or something, please email the office (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Louise will compile a weekly prayer list to be used at all our services.
For reasons of privacy, we will use first names only and the person for whom you are asking us to pray should be happy for you to do this.
Distributing this Newsletter
We are very aware that some people do not have access to electronic communication. If you know someone who would like a paper copy of the weekly newsletter, please do print a copy and deliver it to them. Without access to the Parish Office, we are not in a position to do a mass mail. Equally, deliveries around Cheam are very sporadic at the moment.