A good crowd turned up this morning to celebrate the return of Cafe Church, all socially distanced and following guidelines. The subject was inspiration and we looked at inspiring words from the Bible and from famous people throughout history. Unable to sing, we listened to uplifting songs on dvd and gave examples of when we as individuals had found inspiration in our lives. We also looked at how it was important to pass inspiration on to others, before we shared our prayers. The children did a word search and then decorated keepsake boxes or pencil cases and what a splendid job they made of them on their family craft tables. Our cakes and biscuits were all individually wrapped, but they still went down a treat!
It was a large ‘socially distanced’ congregation that returned to St Bartholomew’s today to join in private prayer and enjoy some fellowship together. Many were glad to just be amongst their church family once more and happily chatted across the pews that kept us safely apart. Jane and Ellie shared two prayers out loud and some visitors who were passing arrived, who were still unable to visit their own church, which hasn’t opened yet. Afterwards, many had a walk around the newly remodelled interior and were unanimous in their praise of the new space that had been created. We look forward to being open again at 10am next Sunday, for private prayer once more.
St Bart’s is now open every Sunday at 10am until the situation changes further.
This will not be for a traditional service, but for people to meet for a time of private prayer and fellowship.
Full precautions will be put in place by the churchwardens.
Social distancing will be maintained, a register of those attending taken, cleansing gel made available, a one way system laid out, no hymns or prayer books and no service sheets.
Insight Supplement Number 3
To read this last issue please click [HERE]
We, at St Bart’s, are delighted to say that the contractors have been able to return to work and the interior of the church is now finished. Those who saw the work almost completed at our last service in March, were unanimous in their praise for the difference it had made. All have commented on how big the church now looks; the flexible open space at the West end has great potential; the welcome table is a great addition; the new heating system is very effective and efficient; the panelled walls, which are a return to the Georgian design of the church, look like they have always been there and the replacement of the Victorian pews with Georgian ones, again returning to the original design of the church, look fantastic. We also have improved access to the organ with the space behind it and the big surprise is that the seating capacity has risen by 100 not the originally planned 60. All will have a clear view of the church front and at weddings, the brides family can now watch the service from the front left pew, previously obstructed by the pulpit.
Our only outstanding part of the remodelling is the delivery of the new wooden chairs, which will follow when circumstances allow.
The vicar and churchwardens have met to plan for the reopening of the church, initially for private prayer, as soon as we are allowed. Please watch this website for further imminent information.
Thank you to all those who have made donations to St. Bartholomew’s or have bought face masks in aid of the Church.
While we are cash-strapped, due to the closure of the Church Building for Covid-19, we are extremely grateful for this boost to our funds.
Jane Hough is making face masks!
She has a few available ..grey, blue pink and solid grey for those who don’t do flowers.
All proceeds to St Bart’s.
Metal nose bridge for good fit and washable..triple layered.
Price £5 (Etsy have them at £12!)
Visit on Facebook or telephone 01270 522568 to order yours.
The Rt Rev. Mark Tanner has been named by Downing Street as the new Bishop of Chester, succeeding the Rt Rev. Dr Peter Forster who retired in September 2019. Bishop Mark is currently the Bishop of Berwick in the Diocese of Newcastle. He said, “It will be hard to say goodbye to the North East, “however, Lindsay and I are really excited to return to Chester where I was ordained, and both of our children were born.”
We might have been under ‘lockdown’ over the weekend for the Coronavirus Pandemic, but it didn’t stop the residents of Church Minshull from displaying a bit of wartime spirit. At 3pm on the 8th the bells rang out as neighbours gathered in their own gardens or on driveways, to have tea as requested by the Royal British Legion. The weather was hot and sunny, a complete contrast to a chilly 10th, when the bells sounded again, with sirens and wartime songs broadcast across the village.
To join in the VE Day 75th Anniversary, when all events have had to be cancelled because of the pandemic, there will be a couple of broadcasts in the village centre. After the success of Amazing Grace being played on Good Friday, we have decided to repeat the idea of playing music on the 8th and 10th May at 3pm. On Friday the 8th, there will be bells played to coincide with the Royal British Legion call for people to have a cup of tea in their own front gardens and on the 10th there will be bells and music to repeat the tea in the garden idea. Sadly, our church is closed and cannot participate in the anniversary, but we do encourage you to ‘take a moment out’ (while observing social distancing) to remember all those who gave so much and to celebrate the many years of peace we have benefited from since.
With the weather forecast set to be hot on Friday and then cold on Sunday, please wrap up warm on the day and remember to stay safe.
God Bless from all at St Bart’s.
75th Anniversary of VE Day, 8th – 10th May. Due to the Coronavirus outbreak cancelling all our village and church events from the 8th to the 10th May, there is now to be a national response in which we can all participate without leaving our own homes. The Queen will deliver a televised address to the nation at 9pm on the 8th, the exact moment her father, King George VI, gave a radio address 75 years ago. Other plans include a public sing along of Dame Vera Lynn’s We’ll Meet Again, a song synonymous with World War Two. The government had moved the traditional early May bank holiday from the 4th to the the 8th of May to allow for events to take place, which had included a service in Westminster Abbey, veterans’ processions and street parties. The BBC will also air messages from The Archbishop of Canterbury, Prince Charles, who will read an extract from his grandfather King George VI’s diary from VE Day and extracts of Sir Winston Churchill’s famous victory speech to the nation announcing the end of the war in Europe.
Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, said although celebrations will now take place “in our homes and on our doorsteps” he is confident the nation will “come together to mark this historic occasion”. People in lockdown are being urged to show their support for the commemorations by following the Royal British Legion’s launch of its “Tommy in the window” campaign, producing specially-designed figures of soldiers for people to place in their windows.
A pack with ideas for homemade VE Day bunting, original recipes, games, and educational and creative activities for children has been produced by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, so families under lockdown can create their own experiences at home.
The BBC will also air a pre-recorded video message from Prince Charles, who will read an extract from his grandfather King George VI’s diary from VE Day.
Extracts of Sir Winston Churchill’s famous victory speech to the nation announcing the end of the war in Europe will also be broadcast.
Tony Hall, BBC director general, said: “At a time when many are looking for unity and hope, the BBC will bring households together to remember the past, pay tribute to the Second World War generation and honour our heroes both then and now.”
Victory in Europe (VE) Day in 1945 marked the formal acceptance of Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender by Britain and its Allies following almost six years of WW2.
It saw spontaneous celebrations break out across the country, and the Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, ventured out with a group of friends, including her sister Princess Margaret, to experience the excitement in London.