‘Roadmap out of lockdown’ – changes at St Mark’s

Following the government’s move to step 4 of the ‘Roadmap out of Lockdown’ we have been working through the Church of England’s guidance. The government have taken the approach of removing most coronavirus legislation. This move means we are being asked to take even more responsibility as individuals and organisations to protect ourselves and others.


The Church of England’s risk assessment is largely unchanged and with local infection rates continuing to rise we remember the words of Paul in his letter to the Corinthians, ‘”All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful.’ (1 Corinthians 10:23, ESV). As a church, we believe that everyone is known and loved individually by God and as many members within one body we are called to be responsible to and for one another. We understand that for some, the restrictions have felt unnecessary and overly restrictive, whilst for others the easing of restrictions has brought anxiety and worry. We are blessed to have a spectrum of voices across the St Mark’s family and we want to assure you that we hear you and we are listening.

With this in mind, we have changed some measures in certain instances/services/events and kept others (for now) in place. Details are below.
Pews – seating in the Sanctuary has now returned to normal capacity. However, we encourage you to leave room between you/your bubble and the next person; we suggest you place a jacket/bag between you.
Face Covering – we ask that you continue to wear a face covering whilst in the building, unless this affects your physical or mental health.
Singing – we are now allowed to sing but we ask that you continue to wear a face-covering whilst doing so. Our choir will return at the 9:00am service and our band at the 10:30am service.
Access – please continue to use the one-way entry and exit system, and be aware of personal space when moving around the building.
Hand sanitisation – we encourage you to have good hand hygiene and use the hand gel on entry and on exit.
Refreshments – will not be served at our regular weekly services for now.
Checking in – although not a legal requirement, we encourage you to continue to check in by using the QR code or sign up to the service/event via the smch.org.uk/calendar. Booking a seat is no longer necessary to come to a service.
Thursday 11am Holy Communion Service – for now, all Covid-safe lockdown measures will remain in place at this service including face coverings, social distance, seat booking (for test and trace) and no singing. We hope this provides a helpful space for those who feel vulnerable but understand this may not suit everyone and is therefore subject to change. Please discuss your thoughts with any of the clergy.
Live-streaming – our services will continue to be regularly live-streamed.
For St Mark’s, the steps out of lockdown will be gradual and are subject to change and assessment of individual events, but, we hope these measures will bring us together as we meet with the Lord, regardless of our diverse opinions surrounding Covid measures.

We would value your prayers as we continue to hold the church family together and navigate a safe return to in-church worship.

Best wishes
St Mark’s PCC Standing Committee


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