St Mary’s Church is serious in its responsibilities to help stop the spread of coronavirus and to support those affected. We’re regularly reviewing what we’re doing in line with the latest guidance from the Government, Public Health England and the Diocese of Leeds.
Please follow all official advice around maintaining distance, wearing a mask in public places and following good hygiene practices.
Please get in touch if you would like the Church to offer you what support we can during this time.
Last updated Saturday 4 September 2021.
What we’re doing
- Following the Government’s ending of legal Lockdown Restrictions across England on 19th July 2021, we are open for worship in person, although we are maintaining some measures to limit the spread of the virus and keep everyone safe in what is still very much an ongoing pandemic.
- There is no longer a need to book to attend worship in person, for any of our services. Our NHS COVID-19 App QR Code remains by the door to scan as you come in, and we recommend you continue to make use of this.
- You must not attend a service if you have COVID-19 symptoms.
- Hand Sanitiser remains available by the door as you enter and exit the building, and we encourage everyone to make use of this.
- Physically-distanced pews are still available in the side-aisles for anyone who would prefer one. The pews in the nave are now unrestricted.
- Communion continues to be in one kind (bread only). This is still considered full communion by the Church of England.
- Our Sunday Service at 10.00 am is live-streamed each week on our website, where you can also find all of our previous services, at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/services. Our special services are also live-streamed.
- You can call us on 0113 467 6777 (charged at the usual rate) to listen to audio recordings of the past few weeks of our services.
- You can listen to all our services on our podcast, by searching your favourite podcast directory for “St Mary’s Church, Whitkirk”.
- Weddings, funerals, and baptisms can now be held without restrictions to numbers. Please get in touch if you would like to book a special service.
- Our church building is open for in-person worship every Sunday and Wednesday. Anyone is welcome to worship with us – we would love to see you.
- Seating in the Nave (the central aisle) is now unrestricted – so friends can sit together again
- The pews in the side-aisles remain distanced to enable anyone who is classed as Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV), not fully vaccinated, or who would prefer to limit contact with others, to worship safely in person.
- We have provided hand sanitiser by the door and have increased our cleaning of the building.
- We’ve invested in better ways to stream services live from the church, bringing online and in-person back together. You can read more about this here.
- Members of the Church community have shared thoughts on items of scripture, poetry and more in our ‘Midweek Musings’. You can find these on our YouTube playlist.
- You can keep up with what we’re doing on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.
- Each week we’re making our notices available on our website, as well as by email newsletter.
- We’re providing additional outreach and pastoral care to members of the community who need it.
- We’ve put together a collection of prayers and resources to help you continue your worship.
- The Church’s Coronavirus Management Team is meeting regularly to discuss matters, share updates and make decisions that do not need the approval of the full PCC.
What you can do
The best way you can help is to follow all official advice, and limit unnecessary contact wherever possible.
Please respect each other’s boundaries and personal space – we have an incredibly diverse congregation and everyone is free to choose for themselves how they want to approach the present situation. Whilst some people are ready to hug their friends and start gathering more closely, many others are still cautious and concerned for their health.
Don’t be offended if someone doesn’t want to shake your hand or wishes to maintain a distance away from other people.
- Our Sunday service is available to watch live every Sunday at 10.00 am, and throughout the week at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/services.
- We’ve put together a collection of prayers and resources you may find useful.
- The Church of England provides liturgy and prayer resources for this time.