Reopening for Public Worship 14 March - 05/03/21
From the Churchwardens
Earlier this week we received the very welcome news from the Coronavirus Task Group in the Diocese that, following advice received from the Directors of Public Health in Lancashire, churches can and should reopen for public worship on Sundays and Feast Days, with effect from March 8th. This means that we are now able to share with you the joyful news that we look forward to welcoming back a congregation on March 14th, Mothering Sunday. What a lovely occasion to be able to worship together once again!
Unfortunately this is not a return to normality and we will have to reinstate all the safe practices we had in place before this latest lockdown: a limit on numbers, hand-sanitising, social distancing and wearing masks or visors whilst in church. Places will also need to be booked in advance as previously. Services will also continued to be live-streamed.
The return to public worship does not, however, mean a return for the choir. We will continue to be limited to 1 cantor. For this reason we have decided it is probably best not to reopen for a congregation in the evenings but to live-stream only. This will enable us to have a very small choir who can provide us with a choral evensong – something which would not be possible if we had a congregation present with the limit of a single cantor. This has been a difficult decision but we hope you feel we have made the right call.
Reopening the church also means that we can welcome back a congregation for BCP Holy Communion on Tuesdays at 10.15, starting from Tuesday March 16th. We know that this service is very special to many of you. Please do remember to book your place in advance.
When Holy Week arrives, we intend welcoming congregations on Palm Sunday 10 am Eucharist, Maundy Thursday 7.30 pm Eucharist, Good Friday 2.00 pm Solemn Liturgy, Easter Day 10 am Festal Eucharist. Other services throughout the week will be held without congregations and will be live-streamed. Much more information to follow later.
It has always been our practice on Mothering Sunday to distribute posies for mothers. We will continue to do this, this year, but in a slightly different way to conform with health regulations. Posies will be blessed at the altar during the service and then be made available to collect from outside the church as people leave.
Finally… we hope to make the church look at its magnificent best on Easter Day and to decorate with lilies. If you would like to send a donation for lilies in memory of a loved one please send your gift either by BACS to ‘PCC Lancaster Priory and Parish Church’, Sort code: 20-47-61, Account: 50564613, reference ‘Lilies’, or alternatively by cheque (with ‘Lilies’ on the reverse) to Barbara Gardner, 76 Wyresdale Road, Lancaster, LA1 3DY. For those of you who regularly give by Gift Aid we will be able to reclaim income tax paid. Very importantly, please send the names of those you wish to be remembered to firstname.lastname@example.org
Hoping that you are finding Lent to be a time of refreshment and enrichment in our journey of faith.
With our best wishes to you all,
Andrew and Pauline
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