From the time following the decision to postpone the May 2020 event, our small team of organizers have been aware that the circumstances around an event in May 2021 would not necessarily be 'situation normal': our best information from our venue was that - come May - there might well be restrictions in order to minimize the risks of transmitting Covid-19.
Our booked venue, High Leigh, has actually been mothballed since November of last year, with a reopening planned for the Spring of this year. But it was the worsening situation in the UK (second/third wave of infections, new variants of the virus, the NHS being close to being overwhelmed) that considerably increased our fears that staging an event with social distancing, masks etc. was not going to be an attractive possibility.
The decision was taken to talk to the staff at High Leigh about cancelling/postponing this year's Conference & Festival, and they have agreed to move the booking to the 27th - 30th May 2022 - so please mark those dates on your year planner!
Our current thinking is that we will attempt a fresh start in planning for next year's event, with a new theme/title (possibly a reflection on what the pandemic has taught us!) - please keep a look out for further newsletters later on in the year.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I am sure you will all join me in congratulating Fr David on this joyous day and in offering sincere gratitude for the love and commitment he has shown both to the parish of St Aidan & St Chad and his flock.
Many Years, Fr David!
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
It is good that the Holy Liturgy can be served again and I am please to have good report and appreciation of this blessing. Sadly, some of us are advised not to be present but we continue to be with you in Spirit. The great blessing of Our Lord is that we have a second priest and Fr Julian has been able to serve the liturgy and provide good pastoral care during these strange times. I have been most grateful for his help, support and assistance, and indeed the help and support of so many of you. I am also grateful to all of you for keeping a good community fellowship and rallying to the Church now that it is open again after such a long 'lockdown’.
As Fr Julian has already explained, we have decided that it will be best, in the months ahead, to arrange for Liturgy on Saturdays of the first and third weekends of each month. St Aidan's is not used on these days so that we are able to start at the reasonable time of 10.30 am. This gives lots of time for preparation which is usually a rushed affair. If we remained with Sunday, we should have to wait for the St Aidan's congregation to vacate the Church, then there would be cleaning to do as well as setting up before we were able to begin. This would mean that the beginning of the or service would be greatly delayed. In fact, it is against canon law to serve the Liturgy after 12 noon. Even in usual times we are barely able to head this.
I will soon join you in Church; indeed I hope to be there on the third Saturday of September. During most of my attendances I will not officiate but it will be good to be with you. I shall hope to serve the Liturgy on St Thomas Day, Tuesday 6th October and on other occasions but Fr Julian will continue as principle celebrant for the foreseeable future. We hope and pray that this present Coronavirus will become a milder infection for all, and that a vaccination will be soon available so that we can return to full normal life. Viruses are not new, we have coped with equally severe epidemics in past years. We have to learn to live with this one as we have learned to live with others. May God grant us His guidance, healing and His help. Above all we must not be fearful for there is nothing that can separate us from the loving care and protection of God
We live with God’s Blessing, may we be open to its greatness.
In Christ Our Lord,
Guidance for the faithful: On entering the church for participation in the Divine Services
The Covid-19 (Coronavirus) is still with us and for our own protection, and that of our church family, it is essential that we follow current Government and Archdiocesan requirements for the safe use of places of worship.
It is hoped that this document provides clear guidance to the faithful attending our services. Failure to follow these guidelines will present not only a risk to health but may also imperil the insurance of the parish. It should be noted that the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has the right and authority to monitor compliance to the guidelines.
Some aspects of the Divine Liturgy will, by necessity, be a little different to our usual practice. However, guidance will be given at the appropriate times
Our Archbishop has advised that Clergy and faithful 70 years of age (or older) should not attend services but rather they should continue to follow streamed services. This advice should also be considered by those who are ‘shielding’ or ‘vulnerable’
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation
Fr David, Fr Julian & Tina (Church Warden)
PRIVATE PRAYER AT CHURCH.
🙏We are able to open Church for Private Prayer with effect from 15th June.
🕰️Church will be open from 1pm to 2pm on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
🌡️Please do not attend if you feel unwell or have coronavirus symptoms.
📏Social distancing must be maintained at all times.
🖐️Use the hand gel provided when you enter the building.
😷Face masks must be worn.
🪑Chairs have been positioned for use near the steps.
➡️Please follow the one way system as indicated.
☎️If you develop symptoms after you have attended, inform us immediately.
🕯️We hope you will find this opportunity a blessing if you choose to use it.
🌿The garden at the side of church is always open if you wish to sit there for personal reflection and prayer.
We have just been informed that this year's children's camp has had to be cancelled. See the attachment for more information.
Father David has sent us a message for Pascha, which can be read on our Blog page here.
In Obedience to the Patriarch and our Archbishop, all divine services are suspended from the 17th March, until further notice. Fr David and Fr Julian will continue to keep you updated as the situation develops. We would also like to assure you that you are all in our prayers and our pastoral support will continue to be available to you all.
Sadly our Deanery has had to cancel both the annual conference and, more recently, the children's summer camp.
Among other information, this link should show the latest situation regarding major events such as this year's conference and children's camp.
(click on document to download)