Church Reopening in Third Lockdown January 2021
We hope to reopen St Clare’s Church for Masses with Congregations on Sunday 24th January 2021.
This will be a gradual reopening, later we may be able to do more.
Baptisms and Funerals are permitted.
There will be one Mass each weekend at St Clare’s at 0930h with a congregation.
The Saturday evening Mass will have no congregation but continue to be streamed as will other daily Masses.
If you wish to book a seat for the Sunday morning Mass, please do so in the normal way during office hours.
Our shut down during the past weeks has given us time to reappraise our position by way of:
1 Noting current Government policy for this lockdown necessitated by the rapid spread of the new strain of the COVID-19 Virus – A great emphasis is now placed on each individual playing their part following existing guidelines.
2 Noting the mind of Bishop David and Cardinal Nicholls by way of response to the above. “We are called to be Hope for others in these challenging times by our Church”.
3 Noting the guidelines of the NHS requesting us to stay at home unless journeys are both permitted and necessary, all of us are asked to keep the guidelines in a positive manner always keeping our Hospital and NHS in mind.
Where are we at right now by way of the Law?
1 We are permitted to leave our homes by law for the purpose of Worship within our area.
2 Our Diocese recommends that all parish churches are open for Worship and Private Prayer as a sign of Hope for our People in these difficult times.
(Keeping in touch with each other as we did in the March Lockdown is a lifeline for most of us)
3 Our Diocese also reminds us that our places of Worship must meet the required standards set for us by our government.
4 Each church should be rendered as safe as possible by the parish priest and stewards in meeting the highest standards of protection for their congregations.
With the above in mind, Canon John is now investing in a machine, currently used in eight churches in our Diocese, i.e., the Cathedral at Northampton and St Teresa’s Beaconsfield, to cleanse the church through the process of fogging. Fogging is a process whereby a vapour is blown through the church by a machine, killing viruses including the COVID-19 strain. The cost of this machine will be in the region of £1000 pounds with ongoing costs for the vapour solution. Here eventually we will need stewards to help, so please give this some thought and get back to me if you can help.
5 Our NHS reminds all of us that staying at home, reducing contacts is perhaps the most effective way.
of preventing the spread of the virus. Please carefully consider each journey thus protecting yourself and others. Some of you have informed me that you will not be attending Mass in church to protect yourselves and indeed others you may be caring for. This is a very responsible, wise, and caring attitude setting a good example. If you feel you have symptoms or an underlying condition please do stay in your home. All our Masses are streamed and many of you get back to me letting me know how much you appreciate Mass from your own parish church. So, keep up the good work until we emerge from this darkness.
Canon John Beirne PP
Friday 15th January 2021