These are unprecedented times. This is what we're doing.
Join us in our virtual services
Tune in every Sunday at 10:30 for a pre-service chat for a 10:45 start, and join us for a live service! This will consist of worship, teaching and prayer. If you fancy a lie-in, these services will be available to watch on YouTube once the stream has ended.
Know someone without internet access?
We are now running a dial-in service where you can listen the latest Sunday message from your phone! Just phone 01284 634037 and after the welcome message, press option 1. The sermons will be available from 6pm on Sunday throughout the week until the following Sunday. Calls will be charged at local phone rates and last approximately 30-40 minutes.
Download the letter below and send to someone!
Things for your Kids
Every Sunday we will be posting a new episode of ‘Online Kids’, where our children’s worker Emma Malcolm will share a story, a thought for the day and some ideas of activities for your family to have a go at.
Stuff for Young People
Every Sunday we will be hosting Zoom calls for our young people. For year 7+, there will be one at 11:00. For year 10+, there will be one at 18:00. Click the button below to head to the youth instagram page where you can request a join code via direct message.
Last Sunday I spoke about God’s salvation and salvation in the Old Testament is the idea of space and freedom plus then in the New Testament it is backed up with further ideas of healing, renewal and restoration. The Lord’s concept of salvation then is a holistic approach in bringing His people into a place of safety. Part of our role as His church and people is to offer safety, freedom, space, healing, renewal, restoration and wholeness in Christ. Our wrestle in recent days is what does this look like as we take tentative steps as a church to emerge out of pandemic lockdown restrictions.
As we have prayed, researched and considered guidelines and best practice advice as a church leadership, two things we do want to encourage you to do this summer:
Please do not come to church on a Sunday morning as following a risk assessment on our building we cannot open up to a congregation of any size yet. The necessary measures are not in place for it to be classed as a COVID safe place to meet. We are taking the necessary steps, procedures and putting cleaning regimes in place to get there though as we start live streaming services this week from the church auditorium. In August we’ll start to risk assess if we can meet as small groups in the building (e.g. for prayer) and if we can make it a safe place of work. September time onwards we may be able to explore if we can set up some kind of rota for people to attend on a Sunday if the local infection rate and guidelines permit.
One of our concerns about opening the building too early to Sunday congregations is that certain groups will be excluded because of age (e.g. Over 70’s, toddlers and kids), fear or health (the vulnerable and shielded). Also all that we could actually offer presently is such a pale reflection of our usual joyful Sunday gatherings i.e. no congregational singing, no sharing of communion, no food, no drink, no fellowship time together before/after the service and no physical greetings or touch for one another. When we do gather again on a Sunday I do want it to be with all people included in what is felt to be a safe place full of joyful worship to the Lord.
We may not be able to gather in any sort of numbers in our building but we still do want to encourage you to meet and connect with others physically if possible this summer. The longer days may give you the chance to meet up for an evening walk in 2s, 3s or any number up to 6 or 2 households meet together outside in a public space and of course remembering to stay 2 metres apart. Could you do the same during the afternoon or early evening and bring a picnic? Another possibility might be for 2 households to meet up in a home – again, socially distanced. An idea expressed to us is that 2 households could perhaps meet together for the live stream Sunday service so that you can worship together.
We’ll leave the creativity to you but ask you always to keep the Government’s guidelines and advice in mind. All this is of course if you feel secure and safe in doing so for yourself and the members of your household, some of whom may still be very vulnerable. Do take the initiative and reach out to others if you can as it may allow you to have that human contact you have been missing, and it can still give you the opportunity to ‘do life together’ with others to share your joys and difficulties and support each other through prayer and practical action.
Thanks so much for understanding, patience support and prayers at this time … your continual encouragement does keep us going even though we can’t physically meet together.
Blessings from your brother in Christ,
David Oakley (Senior Pastor)
Updated Sunday 12th July 2020