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Friday, 10 July 2020

Dear All,

This is such a welcome email to be writing!  Our first service post lockdown will be at 10am on Sunday, 12 July!

For the immediate future we will not be holding the 8:00am service as the logistics of preparing the church for a further service within such a short period of time are not practical.  I am afraid Sunday School will not be restarting this term but, please, come along to church as a family. We will be following the usual pattern for 10am services and so the service this Sunday will be a Parish Eucharist taken by Father Stephen.  Janet and I will ‘sidesman‘ this service to see if everything runs smoothly or if anything needs rethinking.

The practicalities are -
  1. We must remain 2 metres apart from other family groups at all times –coming to church, in church and leaving the church.  For this reason we will be sitting in alternate pews, no-one should sit in the front pew or rear pew in the front half of the church and in the front pew in the rear section of the church. No one should sit within 2 metres of the ends of the pews. We will put chairs in the transepts to increase seating as much as possible but we may run out of space in the church.  You might like to put a garden chair in the car and then we will transmit the service into the churchyard for those who can’t get into church or who pprefer to sit in the churchyard.  If you do choose to sit in the churchyard you must still maintain social distancing at 2 metres.  If you wish to wear a mask, please do. Please wait to enter church if necessary to maintain that 2 metres.  Please avoid touching surfaces unless necessary.
  2. Please use the hand sanitizer provided on entry to the church and when you leave. 
  3. If you wish to visit the toilets the door opposite the south door of the church will be open. Again, please use the sanitizer on entry and on exit.  Please use the surface cleaner provided on any surfaces you have touched including taps and the toilet seat and flush.
  4. We cannot sing or exchange the Peace.  We are asked to make all responses quietly and not raise our voices.
  5. We will use our service booklets as usual and they will then be quarantined for 7 days.
  6. We will have a collection but the collection bags will not be used. We will place plates by each exit for your donations and these will be quarantined for 72 hours before being processed
  7. Father Stephen will explain the arrangements for receiving the host on Sunday but basically we are allowed to receive the host in one kind – the bread.  However we must come up to receive in single file (2 metres apart) and receive standing.  We will not respond.  We will go up to receive by the centre aisle and peel off as appropriate to the side aisles to return to our seat.

Please be patient with these measures , we do reassure you that they are there in order to keep everyone safe. We are aware that this is gong to feel very different but it will be so good to be back in church worshipping together!  If you have any questions do, please, ring either me (01243 641493) or Janet (01243 641698). 

If you wish to see St Mary’s Risk Assessment relating to services at church, please contact me.

Looking forward to seeing you on Sunday,


Service Times

Services are suspended.

The church is open during daylight hours for personal prayer and reflection.

Useful links

Here are some links to resources you may find helpful:

  1. Chichester Cathedral will be live streaming services. For the Eucharist and order of service Click here before 10:00am Sunday and follow the instructions.
  2. The BBC Daily Service is available here.
  3. Prayer for today.
  4. The C of E youtube channel.
  5. We will be updating Fr Stephens Message page on a regular basis.
  6. Hearing You is a new phone help line launched by the Diocese of Chichester in partnership with Together in Sussex in response to the impact that Covid 19 has had on Just about the whole community. It aims to provide pastoral support and a listening ear to the recently bereaved and people directly affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
  7. COVID-19 advice from the Diocese of Chichester here.