Following the relaxation of UK government restrictions we have decided to take these steps:
Hand sanitiser will continue to be available for people to use on entry and to continue to use before receiving the communion wafer.
The arrangement of chairs will return to the pre-pandemic seating plan. Whilst this puts chairs closer together there is still plenty of space for people who want to socially distance to do so.
Masks are not required but individuals need to balance their own feelings and freedom with the needs of those who feel less secure. So, for example, it might be appropriate to ask someone you are sitting near to if it is alright for you to remove your mask during the service. This is something that we are all feeling our way through and we will do so if we show kindness to others and to ourselves.
We will continue to use Zoom for main services so those who do not feel able to join services physically can still be included.
Celebrant need not wear a mask to distribute wafers, unless they wish to do so. Congregation may be asked to wear masks to receive communion if a visiting celebrant requests it.
Gospel reader to continue to stand at edge of dais - a compromise between taking the Gospel to the people and being able to be seen by those on Zoom. Intercessor to continue to have microphone at the back of church.
The plate collection will be brought to the altar - to show the importance of financial giving. The elements will continue to be laid out on a tray adjacent to altar. The Deacon now may help with the elements but should not touch the wafers.
At the Sunday Parish Eucharist we will return to offering wine by the common cup. The Deacon will offer the cup to the choir before moving to a separate station at the side in the South aisle. People will have a choice whether to continue with the wafer only, or to take wine as well by moving to the side. No intinction allowed (dipping wafer into wine) – as it can be unhygienic.
Plan to start changed communion arrangements at 8am on Sunday 27th , February. 10am on 27th February is Together with God (no Eucharist), then for Ash Wednesday on 2nd March and thereafter.
Situation to be reviewed and any changes to be made announced in good time for Easter Sunday