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Starting to Re-Open Church Buildings

Local Churches are starting to re-open their buildings and, so far, twelve have obtained approval to do so. There is a good deal of thought, prayer and work involved in moving forward and it is important that Churches – and ministers and preachers too – do not feel rushed or pressured into re-entry. Please consult together with your minister and with me as Superintendent as I will need to sign-off your completed Risk Assessments.

Any gathering of our people will inevitably present challenges. Gatherings in the kind of numbers we would normally expect for acts of worship in most of our Local Churches – even if legally permitted – cannot be without risk even if those risks are mitigated by strict adherence to safety guidelines. I would urge Local Churches to make sure that everything is still as safe as possible in the light of any new guidelines...

Opening-up our buildings is a part of our outreach and I pray that, as we make the first tentative steps to this end, God will keep us safe and help us begin to restore those aspects of our common ministry and mission which are still bound by COVID-19 restrictions.

There will be no Circuit Plan until the December 2020 Quarter when we will have responded to resumed restrictions in response to a 'second wave'; will finalise which Local Churches are – or plan to be – operating from their buildings; will have consulted again with Local Preachers and Worship Leaders in respect of safety, availability and vulnerability; will have begun to appraise and advance our work together as a Circuit through a new Ministry & Mission Strategy; and will start to bring together and co-ordinate as a whole existing informal arrangements including Zoom and YouTube Services into a recognisable Plan.

Safety is paramount and Connexional and HM Government guidance must be followed assiduously.

Methodist Church C0VID-19 Guidance
Please note the Coronavirus Page on the Methodist Church website:
https://www.methodist.org.uk/about-us/coronavirus/

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