Lockdown easing at St Paul's?
Sunday 5th July will be our 16th Sunday in lockdown, as we have been streaming our Sunday meetings as well as our midweek ministries live via Zoom. It has been a privilege to keep meeting like this and be able to point one another to the God who holds us in his hands. However, as good as it has been to meet via Zoom (and we thank the Lord for the technology to do so), it is nothing compared to the real thing!
The Government has recently announced that churches can open from July 5th. Whilst this is good news, the reality of the situation is still far from certain. Many restrictions are still in place, meaning that when we meet, we won’t be able to worship together in the way that we are used to.
On July 13th, the Parochial Church Council (PCC) will meet to continue our discussion on how we might enter this new phase. Also, we will be in communication with the Diocese as to what we will and won’t be able to manage as a church in these early days of emerging from lockdown, and no doubt receive some guidance from them.
As you know, one of the key concerns is the heartache it would cause to begin to meet physically without being able to welcome those who are more vulnerable among us. While we discuss all of this as a leadership, we ask that you pray with us that we would know God’s kind wisdom.
As previously stated, whatever happens, we will be providing the means to broadcast our meetings live for those not able to meet with the main body. It might well be that we can organise some social gatherings soon where we can meet in a safe way for fellowship in the afternoon after the morning Zoom service. Watch this space!
Let me finish with a few verses from Jeremiah 31:
"3 The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying:
‘I have loved you with an everlasting love;
I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.
4 I will build you up again,
and you, Virgin Israel, will be rebuilt.
Again you will take up your tambourines
and go out to dance with the joyful.
5 Again you will plant vineyards
on the hills of Samaria;
the farmers will plant them
and enjoy their fruit.
6 There will be a day when watchmen cry out
on the hills of Ephraim,
“Come, let us go up to Zion,
to the Lord our God.”’
With love in his name,