Important Information about Re-Opening
- As you know from the Government announcements this week places of worship can re-open from the lockdown after December 2nd, this means that St Michael’s will be open for Mass on Thursday 3rd December and from then onwards. During the lockdown some changes have been made to improve our safety at Mass in particular the pews have all been moved a little to give better spacing between them. Some of you noted to me that if people kneel they can be very close to the person in the pew in front, along with other churches the kneelers have been removed for the time being, please do not kneel in the pews: maintain your distance at all times when you are at Mass.
- The restrictions for Tier 2 state that we can meet for Mass and then add “People can only interact indoors with your own households, but outdoors can interact in groups of up to 6” This means you cannot stand and chat inside the church porch or GS Room, you may stand and chat for a few minutes in the garden, front or back, socially distanced in groups of up to 6 people.
- We are still not able to sing and that will be case over Christmas as well. We can, and will, have recorded carols, this is very good for those at Mass, but I apologise in advance to those joining via live stream, recorded music does not come across well, sorry about that.
- When we closed for the present lockdown our numbers had grown almost to our reduced capacity and some were becoming nervous about the numbers in church. In response to that I started an extra Mass on Saturday evening at 19.00, it only happened once but will be re-instated as we open again. This gives extra capacity to the church and gives you more options. The 09.00 on Sunday is almost full and has few spaces; the 11.00 is not so full and has some spaces most weeks; the new Mass on Saturday evening began with only 10 people and therefore has plenty of space and is a much safer option. If you are nervous about attending Mass maybe you could change your habits and your timetable (you can always watch Strictly on the iPlayer). It is also possible and acceptable for you to attend Mass during the week and not on Sunday, there is plenty of room during the week and no need to book.
- Government Consultation on Faith Engagement
There was a strong ask from the officials of the MHCLG for individual Catholics to respond to this open consultation on the way Government engages with faith communities. The link to the online submission is:
This call for evidence aims to collect views to underpin the Faith Engagement Review. This call for evidence opened on 13th November and will run for a period of 4 weeks closing at 11:45pm on 11 December 2020.
Please ask your clergy, religious and lay faithful to engage in this important consultation.