Over the last weeks two questions have been asked frequently:
1. When will church be open again?
There's a great deal of thought going into this! The National Church has commenced activity with a Work Group who are planning for the re-opening of churches. There's no doubt that there are quite a few aspects to this, to name but a few:
Church buildings being open for private prayer and as places of spiritual (and other) refuge
Commencement of church funerals and weddings
Open for regular public worship: the Daily Offices and the Daily Mass (as well as Sundays and Festivals)
Provision of meaningful and effective Risk Assessments for each and every church before it opens
Regional planning to ensure that opening is appropriately and geographically phased
What's important is that these considerations are taking place now. Hopefully we shall soon learn about the outcomes.
2. When will we be able to receive the Sacraments again?
This is primarily concerned with receiving the Sacrament at the Eucharist. Whilst we read about Spiritual Communion and have perhaps seen the articles about the 'Virtual Eucharist', what we really miss is gathering together on Sunday, for Festivals and for a daily Mass. When will this start again?
Clearly, in the first place, it is dependent upon the church being open for public worship, however, in this Diocese we are also thinking of the ways that worship and the Eucharistic Sacraments can commence safely as the lock-down eases. More news coming soon.
Meanwhile, please see a very appropriate reflection on the Mass from Liz Badman (LLM) by clicking here or going through to the All Saints FaceBook page by clicking here.