As you will know, the Northern Ireland Executive are allowing churches to gather from this Sunday. Kirk Session met last night and below is a short video outlining our response as a church family. I have included the key points from the video in written form below as well.
// Kirk Session have agreed to planning for two live / real-life epilogue services on the evenings of Sunday 9th and 16th August. These will be “test services” to see how the implementation of social distancing measures work. They will be limited in number and will require registration beforehand. More information about them will be provided closer to the time.
// Session agreed to aim towards Sunday 6th September as the date for resuming weekly Sunday services.
// Session also set up a Working Group to work through some of the issues we are required to deal with before meeting together.
Social distancing restrictions are still at 2 metres which has implications for the amount of people that attend services. If the Northern Ireland Executive relax social distancing to 1.5 metres or 1 metre this will have a positive impact for us as a congregation. The easing of restrictions continues to be a fluid process and guidance for churches is changing on almost a weekly basis. We will continue to communicate with you in the days and weeks that lie ahead.
In terms of what you can do in these days we would ask you to do two things. First of all, we would ask you to be patient. I know there is a great desire among many of you to meet again together. I also know that there are some of you who are nervous about meeting together again. We have to balance both of these feelings and move at a sensible speed.
In the days ahead you will hear of other church families opening and restarting services. That is exciting for those churches. Session agreed last night, however, that our plan suits our church family. We must move at a speed which suits us and shouldn’t feel under pressure to meet just because other churches are.
We would ask you to be patient and secondly, we would ask you to pray. Much wisdom is required for the Working Group and for Session. Please pray that the Lord would be with us and would guide and would bring us back together soon.
Yours in Christ,