Arrangements for services at St Swithun’s 

Following the government’s announcement that places of worship may reopen for services, Bridport Team Ministry returned to public worship in church on Sunday 26 July at St Swithun’s, Allington (pictured).

Every Sunday until further notice, there will be a Eucharist service at 9.30am and a service of Morning Prayer at 11am, after which St Swithun’s will remain open until 2pm for quiet prayer.

Anyone who wants to attend worship should register using this link www.bridport-team-ministry.org/register-for-services. Only those with no internet access should register by phoning either Revd Deb Smith (01308 301457) for any September services or the Revd Pete Stone (01308 426459) for August services. Please remember to wear a mask whenever you come into church.

The Church of England has provided detailed guidance and advice to churches across the country as they prepare to reopen. “We will not be returning to normality overnight – this is the next step on a journey,” says the Bishop of London, the Rt Revd and Rt Hon Sarah Mullally, who leads the CofE Recovery Group. “It is important to say that the change in government guidance is permissive, not prescriptive… There will still be restrictions and we must all still do everything we can to limit the spread of the virus to protect each other, especially the most vulnerable.”

The online Sunday services will continue and can be found on the homepage of this website.

St John’s in West Bay is open for funeral services although mourner numbers are restricted so that social distancing can be maintained.

The other five BTM churches are continuing to open for private prayer on a rota basis as follows:
Mondays 10am–12noon St Mary’s, Bridport
Tuesdays 10am–12noon St Mary’s, Walditch
Wednesdays 10am–12noon Holy Trinity, Bradpole
Thursdays 10am–2pm St Swithun’s, Allington
Fridays 10am–12noon Holy Trinity, Bothenhampton

 

Face masks are now mandatory in places of worship

Anyone entering a church, whether for private prayer, an organised service or other reason, must now wear a face covering. The new rule came into force in early August and also applies to a number of other places.

Face coverings were already mandatory in shops, hospitals and medical centres and on public transport, and recommended in some other indoor spaces. In a statement on 31 July, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “We will also extend the requirement to wear a face covering to other indoor settings where you’re likely to come into contact with people you do not normally meet, such as museums, galleries, cinemas and places of worship … this will become enforceable in law from Saturday 8 August.”

The Church of England has updated its coronavirus guidance to reflect the new law. It states that there are a few exemptions: anyone leading a service, or helping the service leader by reading, preaching or leading prayer, can remove their mask, although they must replace it at times when it’s impossible to maintain social distancing – particularly when distributing holy communion.

Singing by members of the congregation or a choir is still prohibited in church at all times.