Parish Update - 1st July 2020
It was wonderful for us to open St Oswald’s for private prayer on Sunday morning. Several people took advantage of the opportunity to sit and pray and the church felt very welcoming and peaceful. A huge thank you to Bryan Hopper, Paul Thomas, and Diane Haddock for all your work in making this happen. Please see the notices below for details of opening times in the coming week.
This has been a challenging few days. Last Tuesday afternoon, the Prime Minister announced several changes to the Covid-19 regulations which will apply from 4th July. One of these was that places of worship will be able to open for services, subject to the government’s further guidance. Many of us will have been delighted to hear this news. After all, it has now been nearly sixteen weeks since we were last able to gather together for worship.
Whilst this is an encouraging step forward, unfortunately the government’s guidance was only published on Monday morning. At the time of writing this, the Church of England’s own guidance, which will be based on that of the government, remains to be published. As a result, we have decided that we are not going to be in a position to open our churches on Sunday 5th July for anything other than the private prayer sessions we already had planned. It is neither safe nor sensible for us to make a commitment before we know the details.
We are, however, planning to offer some form of public worship in the parish from Sunday 12th July. Depending on the precise nature of the guidelines, we are planning either a simple Eucharist or a Service of the Word at St Dunstan’s at 9.30am. The service will, of course, be open to everyone in the parish, not just those who regularly attend St Dunstan’s. Whilst we await more detail, we do know from the government’s own guidance that:
Social distancing must be maintained, allowing for two metres where possible. This means limiting attendance at St Dunstan’s to a maximum of thirty people in the congregation.
A booking process is suggested to manage attendance.
Communion should be allowed, but in one kind only, and following certain restrictions.
Singing in any form will not be permitted.
We are reminded that the over 70s continue to be at risk and should stay at home as much as possible.
The service will also be streamed on our YouTube channel, allowing those who cannot attend to continue to worship with us. We will continue to open for private prayer at St Dunstan’s and St Oswald’s.
There is still much work to be done over the coming days to ensure that we will be able to deliver this service. We will provide more details as soon as we are able.
In the meantime, please would you keep me and our wonderful, dedicated churchwardens in your prayers as we make difficult decisions and continue our preparations?
Tell Out My Soul
O God, whose word is fruitless
where the mighty are not put down,
the humble remain humiliated,
the hungry are not filled,
and the rich are:
make good your word,
and begin with us.
Open our hearts and unblock our ears
to hear the voices of the poor
and share their struggle;
and send us away empty with longing
for your promises to come true
in Jesus Christ. Amen.
Janet Morley, “All Desires Known”
With love and prayers to you all,
The Reverend Dr Nicholas Peacock
Team Rector, Cheam Team Ministry
Worship Coming Up in July
Wednesday 1st July 11.00am Eucharist (BCP)
Sunday 5th July 9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 4
Wednesday 8th July 11.00am Eucharist (BCP)
Sunday 12th July 9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 5
YouTube and In Person
Wednesday 15th July 11.00am Eucharist (BCP)
Sunday 19th July 9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 6
YouTube and In Person
Wednesday 22nd July 11.00am Eucharist for Mary Magdalene
Sunday 26th July 9.30am Parish Eucharist for Trinity 7
YouTube and In Person
Wednesday 29th July No Service
The Rector will be on leave in August and we are currently exploring possibilities for services in this time.
Details for accessing Zoom coffee on Sunday 5th June are below. Please contact the Office for the password.
Meeting ID: 884 0628 5452
Church Opening for Private Prayer
Following government guidance, our plan is 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 from 5th July
· 11.00am-12.00pm on Wednesdays from 7th July
St Alban's - there are currently no plans to open, but we are keeping this under review and will be undertaking a risk assessment shortly.
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 (email@example.com).
Virtual Sunday School and Children’s Worship
A huge thank you to Ros, Melody, and Daisy for keeping our Sunday School going on a virtual basis. They have done an excellent job – overseeing children’s activities over Zoom is far from straightforward! Our provision will continue for the next three Sundays before taking a break for the summer holidays until September.
On Sunday 12th July, we will be having another Children’s Service. More details will follow in next week’s newsletter.
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 (firstname.lastname@example.org) or contact the office.
If you would like us to pray for someone or something, please email the office (email@example.com) 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.
If anyone would like to be contacted, please call or email the Parish Office. We are happy to offer practical advice (where possible) or simply have a friendly chat. PLEASE DO NOT FEEL ALONE.