The sight of the Halsall family bringing their daughter Harper for baptism at the main morning service last Sunday was a welcome sign of community life resuming during what we hope are the last weeks of any pandemic restrictions. So too the happy gathering outdoors for coffee/tea after the service.
Coffee/tea was made available outdoors after the 10.30am service for the first time since the start of the pandemic, which was a very welcome step towards “normality”. It will also be wonderful this coming Sunday to have a baptism at our main morning service, again a first since the arrival of the coronavirus.
The increased permitted church capacity since September 6th and the resumption of our evening service, means more people can join us for worship on Sundays, or midweek on Wednesdays. Please feel free to come along to any service. Details above.
The Taoiseach, Micheal Martin, announced plans last week to lift most of Ireland’s Covid-19 restrictions over the next two months, the majority to go completely in late October. At the time of writing, we have yet to receive any detail as to how this will affect us as a worshipping community.
We do know that from Monday, September 6th, all religious ceremonies can go ahead with 50% of venue capacity regardless of the immunity status of attendees. It is hard to see how this will make much difference while the 2m social distancing rule remains in place. However, we estimate that approximately 80 could attend worship in St Paul’s and remain 2m apart, which is an improvement. If you would like to return to in-church worship but have stayed away so far because you think there may not be room, please note that we have rarely got close to the existing limit of 50 since we reopened!
Hopefully we will hear soon when congregational singing can begin again and perhaps we will be allowed to socialise over coffee after services.
Rev Gary Dowd