Around 16 months ago the first Covid lockdown began. As events have unfolded, 360Life Church has always sought to be wise in following the legal requirements and in heeding government guidance. Since Covid restrictions are to be lifted on 19th July, we must, once again, determine how 360Life Church should respond.
For some of us, there is understandable relief that booking seats at services, maintaining restrictions on singing and complying with the legal requirement to wear face masks is all coming to an end. But for others, we appreciate that these changes bring heightened concern, especially given the current increases in Covid cases in our area and the fact that notifications to self-isolate are running high.
As a church, we have a real duty of care for one another. We are called to “prefer one another in love”. It is also right that we act responsibly and continue to play our part in helping to reduce transmission of the virus within the community at large. We must also assist those who are not yet feeling confident to meet to worship with others at Cale Green Life Centre.
For the sake of the whole church, we are striking a balance:
- We will reduce the risk of transmission by maintaining open ventilation (keeping doors and windows open), by the regular cleaning of the building, and by continuing to encourage everyone to use hand-sanitiser upon entering and leaving the building.
- We encourage everyone to limit close personal contact with many different people, especially during the first few weeks of the new guidelines.
- We ask everyone to respect other people’s “personal space”.
- Masks will no longer be a legal requirement. But if you feel safer continuing to wear one, we suggest that you do so. Some people may wear a mask to show care and concern for others.
- With that in mind, it would be considerate for all of us to put a mask on when we are singing together.
From July 19th there is no requirement to sign-in or to book-in for services in advance.
Chairs will be put out in rows (rather than bubble groups). If you would rather keep the seat(s) next to you unoccupied, cards will be available at the entrance that you can put on the seat(s) beside you, so that others know to leave the space for you.
Of course we will continue to live-stream every Sunday service. You know we are working hard to improve the reliability and quality of the live-streaming. The increase in broadband capacity that we ordered some weeks ago has now been installed and it will make a real difference.
In addition to the Sunday morning services, there are many other opportunities to meet together in various settings. For instance, in weekly small groups, Tuesday evening prayer meetings, the Thursday morning café, occasional picnics and (we trust) a barbecue to be held during the main summer holiday period. Even if you don’t feel able yet to come to Cale Green on a Sunday morning, you can always watch the livestream at home and perhaps try an in-person event in a smaller setting first.
As always, if you are unwell or have Covid or flu symptoms, please stay at home.
Over the summer holidays, youth and children’s groups are taking a break. However activity packs will be available for children to use during the service and additional events will be happening for children and young people. We aim to re-start all youth and children’s groups, in-person, in September.
All of us have waited so long for Covid restrictions to end. Nevertheless we must be mindful that the virus is still here and that we have a responsibility to act carefully and considerately around others. So let’s all move together, safely, through this next step. We are confident that God will help us as we do so.
If you have any questions about any of this, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Hayley, Kevin & Andy