Coming back to church!
As economies are beginning to reopen, people are venturing out once again into public spaces with a degree of boldness, and there is a timid tip-toeing towards restarting “normal” life. Even as our schools return this week, we are only too well aware that the Covid-19 virus has not gone away, so we still need to be vigilant, careful and protective of those who are most vulnerable in society.
For churches and their clergy, this is both good news and also a time that is potentially pivotal in how we continue our ministry to be most effective.
Throughout these past months I have longed to be gathered with you, my church family. I have missed out on the joys of our Sunday Mass, the sharing of coffee, of rich fellowship time with people. Such longing is certainly a shared experience for many who are eager to return to face-to-face Church life. At the same time as I am eagerly waiting for the return of normality, I don’t want to forget the lessons that God has been teaching me in isolation. These have been very profound, and I thank God for the lessons learned.
We have been worshipping together again in Church on Sundays since July, and with our deep cleaning regime, social distancing in the pews, along with face masks and disposable Mass sheets, we have attempted to make every aspect of Church life as safe and hygienic as possible. Now with limited music allowed from the choir, and Sunday School hopefully re-starting on September 27th, things are gently feeling more “normal”again.
Not to receive regularly the Holy Sacrament of Christ’s body and blood is a huge loss to many of our people, and whilst we have worked very hard at providing “live streamed” Masses every single week since March, there really is no substitute for sharing our worship and fellowship together in person on Sunday or weekdays.
As your parish priest, I ask you to consider making a gentle return to Sunday Mass, or if you feel more comfortable with a much smaller group of people, then why not try our simple Mass on Tuesday at 9:30am, Wednesday at 6:00pm or Friday at Noon.
We really do miss you, and so it is our prayer and hope to all be together again very soon, gathered around the table of the Lord as God’s holy people.
Yours in Christ,