that is …….Sunday 19 July 2020
Update on the reopening of Hunstanton Methodist Church
Several folks have been asking about the re-opening of the church with the easing of lockdown. Whilst certain actions have been carried out during lockdown, the full government guidance was not published until late on the afternoon of 29 June.
At present there is no definite date to give you for reopening.
Plans are in place to ensure churches in the Circuit meet the required standards to be Covid 19 compliant in readiness to be given the go ahead to reopen.
Please be assured you will be kept informed as soon as it is practicably possible.
The Methodist Conference will meet virtually this year
The Conference Business Committee has agreed that the Conference will meet between June 25 – July 2 2020 in order to conduct its essential business. The committee recognised that the restrictions that are likely still to be in place at the end of June mean that a virtual meeting is necessary. The committee was encouraged by the experience of the Council when it met virtually.
The Conference will open with the Induction of the President and Vice-President and the rest of the timetable can be viewed here. Reception into Full Connexion will take place on Saturday 27 but ordinations will be delayed to a later date.
Not everything in the original agendas will take place this year. The restriction on groups meeting has meant that some Synods have not been able to meet and give full consideration to God in Love Unites Us, and the Council agreed that the debate and voting on the provisional resolutions will be deferred until the 2021 Conference. This also means that any other business (eg memorials) relating to those resolutions will not be considered this year.
We are particularly mindful of those for whom this is a significant Conference personally (eg ordinands and those designated for office) and hope that the Methodist people will keep them and all the representatives in their prayers.
Update 11 June from Methodist Church in Britain Website re: Opening Churches for Worship
The Government has changed its advice to allow churches and other religious buildings to open for individual prayer from Saturday June 13.
The Methodist Church’s advice remains that churches stay closed, but we recognise that different parts of the British Isles might be at different stages and we appreciate that there may be those who feel their mission depends on their church being open for individual prayer. If Managing Trustees feel they are at a point where they want to open their buildings for individual prayer, this guidance must be followed.
When the Government announced its intention to change the advice it stated that: ‘Places of worship still have discretion over when they consider it safe to open and may decide to remain closed or reopen at a slower pace if they wish’ and we would like to stress that no-one should feel under any pressure to open buildings for individual prayer.
We understand the vital need for prayer at this time and have found that our people have been praying no less because they have not had buildings in which to pray. We know that mission, ministry and church has been happening in new and exciting ways in these times.
We are conscious that those churches in jurisdictions outside England may have different needs and mission opportunities, and have to abide by different regulations from English churches.
Above all, we want people to pray and worship safely and as we have already stated, we are committed to doing a full review of our guidance after the Conference.
During the COVID 19 lockdown there are many resources available online if you wish to access them.
Below is a screenshot of the Methodist in Britain Website page for ‘Worship during the coronavirus pandemic’ with many options.