St Barnabas is open again for public worship on Sunday, July 19 at 10 am. Last week the diocese approved our plan for re-opening. This is exciting news for those who have waited patiently for the day when we would be free to gather again in God’s holy house. Churches are consecrated spaces where we can find peace, receive the sacraments, and encounter the reassuring presence of God. In times of crisis, it is natural for people of faith to seek the comfort of their beloved church.
But…our return will be a slightly different experience this time around. The diocese has authorized St Barnabas to re-gather, provided we meet certain conditions. The main difference is that we will have to wear a mask in church. There are a number of other changes, which I will tell you about closer to the date. Sadly, there will be no hymns sung, or singing of any kind, at least for the time being.
When the early guidelines for re-gathering were released, it contained an exclusion on those aged 65 years and over from attending. I said then that we would not re-open until all persons were welcome – happily, that early prohibition has now been lifted, and the church will be open for all to attend. However, those who have an underlying health condition, or who are anxious about entering the church, should carefully consider whether or not to return. We are making every effort to ensure the church is clean and poses a minimal risk to health.
On July 19 we gather in the sanctuary for a celebration of the Holy Eucharist. The following Sunday, July 26, which sadly will be my last Sunday with you, we will gather outside (weather permitting.)
If you can make it, I look forward to seeing you there! In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact our wardens Ed Rowles and Joanne Figliola , or Pat McDonald, who is overseeing all the practical aspects of our return to public worship.
Have a happy Fourth of July.