The following information is included in the Prescot Parish Newsletter on Sunday 25 July. Read below or click here to download the information as a PDF.
St Mary’s Roadmap
As you will know, the country is emerging, cautiously, out of lockdown, and the Church of England is advising churches to do the same. Whilst a number of measures are no longer mandatory or enforceable by law, it is important that we proceed gently, recognising that infection rates, nationally and locally, are still high.
The following roadmap is a rough idea of what church might look like over the coming weeks and months. However, it is important to note that each step is dependent upon safety, which must always come first. If infection rates spike, it may be necessary to delay the return of certain aspects of the roadmap.
Recognising that the lifting of restrictions will be a relief to some and a cause of anxiety to others, we ask that you be mindful of those around you. If you are anxious about attending church after the lifting of restrictions, do speak to a member of clergy, a warden, or a sidesperson, and we will do all that we can to ensure that you can attend church comfortably and safely.
From 19 July
- No booking requirements but QR Codes still in place.
- No limits on numbers at services, including weddings, baptisms, and funerals (however, very large events e.g. Remembrance to be discussed nearer the time).
- No seating restrictions.
- There will be no sanitising of pews after services but frequently touched points e.g. doors, lecterns, etc. will still be cleaned regularly.
- There will be a safe zone for those who feel vulnerable/who are high risk.
- Full choir will return.
- There will be congregational singing of two hymns, ideally whilst wearing a face covering.
- Cushions, kneelers etc. to be returned.
- Signs saying ‘Please leave this seat free’ will be available for anyone who wishes to be sat alone.
- We ask that you please wear a mask and maintain social distancing whilst entering/exiting the church and during communion.
- Please sanitise your hands upon entry/exit and after receiving communion.
- Communion will be given in one kind only.
- The Peace will remain contact-free.
- If you have any symptoms, even if they are very mild, please remain at home until you have taken a PCR test to confirm.
- The Offertory plate will not be passed around but a retiring collection will be possible (however, as ever, signing up to the Parish Giving Scheme is the safest and most effective option).
- Exit from the church will still take place via all available doors.
From 1 August
- Refreshments will be served in the Parish Centre after services. We ask that you maintain social distancing and wear a mask when entering/exiting, and please sanitise your hands. All doors and windows will be opened for increased ventilation and you are invited to sit outdoors if you wish.
From 29 August
- The congregation will be invited to sing the mass setting as well as two hymns, ideally whilst wearing a face covering.
- Full altar party and servers to return.
- The bread and wine will be brought to the altar during the Offertory hymn.
From 6 September
- Coffee Morning at St Paul’s to resume.
- Full choir rehearsals begin.
- Baptism preparation classes to resume.
- Discipleship courses to take place again.
- All Youth Work, Children’s Ministry, etc. to become possible again.
- A week-day communion services to be reinstated (details to follow).
From 12 September
- Faith Kids to resume.
- The Gospel to be read amongst the people.
- Additional sung mass parts to be reinstated.
- Clergy, choir, and servers to process.
From 3 October
- Altar rails and cushions to be replaced but please maintain a distance between yourself and the person next to you.
- Additional hymns to be reinstated.
To be noted:
- Services will continue to be livestreamed indefinitely.
- Holy Communion will be given in one kind only and the Peace will remain contact-free until infection rates change dramatically.