Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, we are having to make big changes to what we do as a church at present. We will keep you updated here. Please check back regularly to find out:
- What changes are there to our church’s activities?
- How can we worship and grow closer to God at this time?
- How can we show love for others?
We are following national guidance from the Church of England and the government. We also urge everyone to follow the latest advice given by the NHS which can be found here.
What are we doing as a church?
From September 2020 we will be re-starting some of our regular activities in a limited form – including gathering for Sunday worship. Sadly, we have had to suspend many of our our other regular activities. However, through these difficult times, we want to encourage everyone to use every opportunity to persevere in growing stronger in our faith in God (James 1:2-5), our love for one another, and our compassion for others.
The changes currently include:
- Sunday Worship Services will resume in a limited form from 6 September 2020 – along with Sunday children’s and youth activities. Safety measures will be in place, including a limit on capacity – so people will not be able to come every week. More details are on our homepage.
- Sunday Online services will continue on our website with a mix of content – live from St James’ building and pre-recorded from homes
- Funerals and Weddings will be possible for up 30 people to attend.
- 5:45 Prayer will be via Zoom on Sundays at 5:45pm. Contact us for how to join.
- All regular midweek activities in our church’s buildings are currently suspended until we are able to reopen safely. These include:
- Toddlers: Karibuni, Tots and Toast
- 6:30 Kids
- Roots (Youth Group)
- Whitfield Community Café, Coffee Pot Café
- Alpha (Morning and Evening Groups)
- Midweek Communion
- Some bookings of our buildings may become possible within safety rules and guidelines. Please contact the Church Office if you need to discuss your booking.
- The Church Office will remain available for contact via phone, email and social media – but it may take a bit longer to respond. The Vicar and other leaders in the church will also be working as usual, based from home.
- Growth Groups are encouraged to be creative in deciding how to stay in contact with each another and to continue providing support and encouragement to one another within government safety rules and guidelines.
- We will take steps to provide some practical and pastoral support – particularly to those who are vulnerable, housebound, self-isolating or distressed – and encourage all of us to do the same.
- We will encourage increased communication between people – particularly encouraging one another to grow in our faith and finding ways to express love for others.
What can I do?
There are lots of things we can do at this time, including:
- Spend time praying each day
- Pray about coronavirus but also many other issues locally and globally
- Take more time to listen to God
- Explore different types of prayer (more suggestions to follow)
- Contact others and offer to pray for them over the phone
- Share prayer requests in 2s-3s or as a Growth Group – and ask others what you can pray for. Then pray for them.
- READ the Bible!
- Follow a daily reading plan (suggestions to follow)
- Read a Christian Book (suggestions to follow)
- Share ideas and thoughts
- SHOW LOVE for others
- Keep in touch with people – via phone/email/social media
- Look out for those who might be lonely, suffering, worried or afraid – and think of ways to show compassion to them.
- Take an interest in people’s spiritual health – and offer to pray for them.
- Offer practical help (within hygiene restrictions and safeguarding rules)