Covid-19 and church

An opportunity for online worship while our church is closed

We live in a difficult time with fast moving circumstances in the face of the Covid-19 epidemic.  It was clear that restrictions were going to be placed on us and the Prime Minster has announced that we should avoid all unnecessary social contact.  Older people,  and those with underlying health problems, have been asked to take even more precautions.

The URC Daily Devotions team are  offering Sunday services via the Daily Devotions email list.  These began on March 22nd, and each Sunday they will send out, at 10am, a service in both written and audio format.  This will have the feel of a service on the radio in our style with well known URC people leading worship.  There will be prayers and hymns to join in with as we pray together.  There will also be, from time to time, a chance to share bread and wine together – the first such opportunity will be on Easter Sunday. It should be possible to find any missed services in the archived material on the site.

Anyone who has email and would like to avail themselves of this form of worship can sign up to receive the Devotions Emails.  They simply need to go to devotions.urg.org.uk

On 29th March, Phil Nevard, a minister in the South Western Synod, will lead worship for us. Rev’d Andy Braunston from Daily Devotions will lead worship on Palm Sunday and Good Friday. Our General Secretary elect, John Bradbury, will lead Easter Sunday worship. Nicola Furley Smith, our new Secretary for ministries, will lead worship for us for Low Sunday. After that Fleur Houston, Nigel Uden, Sarah Moore, Richard Church, Janet Sutton Webb, Neil Thorogood and Ruth Browning will all prepare worship for us.  We will hear a variety of voices in each service and we will create opportunities for you to join in as well.

 

 

Below is the link to the NHS webpage dedicated to information about the virus.
https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

You may wish to use / share this prayer:

For those who are sick
and those who care for them,
that they might be restored to health
and receive all that they need this day:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For those who have died
and those who mourn,
that they might know consolation:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For nurses and doctors,
and all who work in hospitals and medical care,
that they might be sustained with energy for their work,
and might have all that they need for good patient care:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For public health experts,
for scientists and bioengineers
working to understand the virus and to find treatment and prevention
that they might have insight and success:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For the World Health Organisation,
for government officials,
that policy and practice might be wise and effective:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For those in quarantine,
that their spirits might be sustained,
and for those separated from people they love
by the circumstances of this illness:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For those who are afraid,
that they might know peace:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For those who are being harassed or persecuted
as racism is expressed around this illness,
that they might be protected:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
For those whose sin of racism clouds their eyes, minds and hearts,
that they might repent and love their neighbour:
Gracious God, receive our prayer.
Gracious God, receive our prayers,
those made with these words
and those made in the murmurs of our hearts.
In Christ’s name we pray.
Amen.

Jemma Allen is a priest of the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

 

While we consider how to help each other, sadly, we also need to be aware of  some more negative aspects. Please see below and ensure that any elderly or vulnerable family and neighbours are made aware: