St. Andrew's Church

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From Philip Tarris:

Our church

As Rector of the Sampfords, Radwinter and Hempstead I just wanted to send a message of support to everyone as we all grapple with the implications of Covid19, and the extraordinary week that has just passed where the country has literally moved to a warfooting.

The prompt actions taken by the Parish Councils to pull together a support network for the vulnerable and those in isolation has been wonderfuland thank you to everyone involved with that. Thank you also to all those who are just ringing up their neighbour and offering practical support. Thank you to those working in the NHS, social care, funeral services, and all essential workers who are supporting us at this most difficult time.

The church has needed to adjust too. On a practical level, the church buildings were first closed to public worship and then two or three days later they were closed completely, even to the clergy. But let’s not think that just because our buildings are closed our church life shuts down. The church is very much alive, and we just need to do things differently. The Archbishops have said "our life is going to be less characterised by attendance at church on Sunday, and more characterised by the prayer and service we offer each day". Prayer will continue but “in our hearts and in our homes, not in our churches”.

Many people may be frightened and anxious about what may lie ahead. Others will be worried about their income and how to support their family. Many of our church members are themselves in the more vulnerable category. But one thing we can do is draw alongside people, pray for them and share our hope for the future and we shall do that in the coming weeks.

I watched the emotional tribute to the NHS and other key workers last night as people came out and clapped and cheered, which gave a real feeling of togetherness in this fight against the virus. This morning I then heard a doctor on television thank the population for that tribute, but also remind us that the absolutely key thing we can all do tohelp protect lives and protect NHS workers is to observe the government request to stay at home where possible, avoid essential travel and keep our distance from people. Let’s really put that into practice in the coming days.

Do contact me, or those you know in the church, if you are in need of help, or conversation, or you would like us to pray for you.

Take care
Philip Tarris, Rector, 01371 830374, pgtarris@gmail.com

'Holy Communion'
is a said service, using the traditional language of the Book of Common Prayer.

'All Age Eucharist'
is a slightly shorter, more informal service containing communion.

'All Age Worship'
is very similar but does not have communion. Both are in contemporary language with music.

'Sung Eucharist'
is a communion service in contemporary language, with music.

'Matins' and 'Evensong'
(Morning and Evening Prayer) are traditional non- Eucharistic services from the Book of Common Prayer, usually with music.

'Healing Service'
is a peaceful service with prayer about those things which are concerning us, and includes a time to sit quietly in the pew or go up for the laying on of hands.

is a Sunday Club for children of Primary School Age with stories and activities.

is a relaxed service for under 5s and their carers with story, hymn, prayer, craft and refreshments, run jointly with the Baptist Church.

'A Time for Prayer'
is a 30 minute service of prayer for the world, the benefice and ourselves.

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