TOWARDS REOPENING OF OUR CHURCH – UPDATE 1
Last Thursday evening (16July), a “Zoom” Kirk Session meeting was held to consider the contents of Version 2 of the guidelines from the Church of Scotland regarding the procedures which must be carried out before our church can be reopened for worship or funeral / wedding services. We had hoped that Version 3 would have been published by now, but unfortunately that document was only issued on the 17th.
It has been made clear that responsibility for the health and safety of all users of the church rests with Kirk Session and this is obviously a matter that Kirk Session does not take lightly.
Our meeting considered the various risks involved and the hygiene procedures which require to be agreed and put into operation before our church can be safely reopened.
A subgroup of Kirk Session members has been set up and tasked with the formulation of detailed proposals for entry into and exit from the church ; the sanitising of the accommodation before and after each use of the building ; seating capacity and arrangements according to the current social distancing regulations (With the present 2m distancing, the church capacity would be restricted to approximately 30 worshippers) . . . . .
Kirk Session has arranged a further Zoom meeting for Thursday 6 August when the proposals made by the subgroup will be discussed by all the Elders before a final decision is made regarding a proposed reopening date for church services. It is anticipated that it will be mid-August at the earliest before services of worship can take place in our church.
As intimated previously, there will be many changes to the format of these services :- reduced numbers attending, no singing, no intimation sheets, Bibles or Hymn books, and face coverings will require to be worn but, most importantly, the Word of God will still be preached.
I will obviously keep you all informed of developments and our plans.