Bishop Robert Innes has released a video message to the Diocese (Friday March 20) which you can see by clicking here…
The Archbishops of Canterbury and York have issued a joint response to Church of England clergy, the latest on 24 March 2020. They have called for the temporary suspension of all public worship and private worship in churches until further notice. Our Bishops in the Diocese in Europe are commending these steps and asking that if there are further restrictions in our own country that we subject ourselves to those also.
This is what we will do at Holy Trinity Church in Utrecht:
- Public Worship and Gatherings are suspended – There will be no more public services of worship (Sundays and midweek) or other public gatherings at the church or Parsonage until further notice.
- PRAYER – The chaplain will continue to say Morning and Evening Prayer daily and commends this for people in the chaplaincy privately in their homes. Click here for recorded services which you can follow or about how to do this on your own following the Book of Common Prayer or Common Worship.
- CHURCH NO LONGER OPEN FOR PRIVATE WORSHIP – The Archbishops of Canterbury and York and called for the closing of all churches midweek temporarily as a further safety precaution (24th March).
- LIVE STREAM WORSHIP – We are live-streaming the services with video on Sundays on the internet and making available the recording of the service afterwards. Click here to find the link on Friday for the Sunday service or to hear the service afterwards if you can’t be there at 10:30am.
- PASTORAL CARE – Fr David is very available by telephone for calls (06 124 104 31). Our Pastoral Assistants – Danielle Los (06 111 50 152) and Harry Barrowclough (0344 572 799) – are also available by telephone. Local Contacts have been making friendly calls to encourage those in their area.
We have now made further arrangements for pastoral care during this pandemic. Danielle Los, our Pastoral Assistant, will coordinate this special care. Please contact Danielle Los at 06 111 50 152 if you are sick, or if you are self-isolating, or if you are in need of any assistance, or would like prayers or someone to speak to more regularly. Please also contact her if you are willing to provide help to others. She can make connections between those who live close by. She will engage the Prayer Ministry Team. We also encourage you all to continue to connect with one another for mutual encouragement.
- STAYING CONNECTED – We will be looking at other ways to stay connected through email notifications (e.g. Newsletters, Trinity Tidings). Please contact David Vollmer if you want to have your name on our contact list (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are not receiving a weekly update. We have begun podcasts of daily Morning and Evening Prayer, and daily meditations on the Scripture readings on our website. We are open to ideas from the congregations on how to deepen our fellowship in this time of forced isolation. Please contact David Volmer (email@example.com) or the Chaplain if you want to share an idea.
Here is the guidance to clergy about Pastoral visiting from the Church of England website:
In circumstances where people are self-isolating because they are symptomatic or have been in contact with someone who has been symptomatic, no pastoral visits should be undertaken until their isolation ends. However, do offer phone support.
In circumstances where someone is self-isolating for their protection and a pastoral visit is thought to be necessary, please make sure you follow rigorous health and hygiene practices and maintain social distancing.
Let us pray to God for protection from this peril, for the stopping of its transmission, for healing for those who are sick, for those who mourn the loss of loved ones, for protection of the health care workers, for those affected financially, socially or spiritually, and for wisdom for leaders of governments to take the best measures. May our hearts look heavenward and to the needs of our neighbour and may love increase.
We wish you a blessed Lent as we journey together with Jesus to Jerusalem in the Way of the Cross and to celebrate His glorious Resurrection.
In the love of Christ,
The Chaplain and Wardens