“Yet even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; Joel 2.12 Dear Friends, On Wednesday our Lenten journey will once again begin anew.Lent last year was disturbed by the coming of Coronavirus, the shutting of Church for public worship, and worship limited to the […]
| Lockdown 16th January 2021|
Dear Brother and Sisters,
I am glad to say that on Thursday I came out of isolation having developed no symptoms, and feeling fine. Whilst frustrating, it is clearly the responsible thing to do. Thus, I am back to normal, which is good news.
I am also delighted that the newly refurbished community centre at Bat and Ball has become a local testing facility for those who are symptom free. Whilst we know these tests are not 100% reliable, they are of some assistance. It is worth pondering, if you are out and about, using this, to try and catch symptomatic cases. I have, and intend to do do in the future.
Tomorrow there will be Masses at 9am & 10am. Unfortunately, sining by a group larger than three has now been restricted by legislation, so we will no longer have the choir in the same way. Nevertheless, the organ and a cantor will sing and play, and we are very grateful to those continuing to do this.
I do want to stress that legally there should be no mingling between households/bubbles. I know it is tempting to chat with people in and outside Church but we must really aim to restrict this now. We have rightly been given the ability to worship but we must ensure that we do not socialise, tempting though this so is. Please do keep to this. Use the telephone and zoom if you want to talk/socialise. There is no doubt how serious this moment in the epidemic is, and I want to ensure we are keeping to the norms we should.
A reminder, please sanitise your hands on entering the Church, before receiving holy communion, and wear a face covering.
To those of shielding, we will broadcast on facenbook at 10am and understand who you are not with us. Hopefully the roll out of the vaccine will come quickly, and we look forward to welcoming you back with high levels of immunity!
Please care and look out for one another at this difficult time; as so often little things can mean so much.
In the mean time if you have any questions or concerns please be in touch.
Your friend and parish priest
Many of you have asked what we are going to be doing at St John’s this Christmas.
As you know with the present infection it would be wrong to try and do our normal family nativity and Christingle with 350 (or more!) of us crammed into the Church at 4pm on Christmas Eve.
To that end we have taken another approach.
‘Let us go to Bethlehem’ is a journey around the darkened Church using projection and multimedia to tell the story of the first Christmas. Individual videos will be available by QR codes allowing children to learn more about each part of this amazing and lifegiving story. The trail will take about 15 minutes to complete, ending at the crib. Please don’t all come at once – it’s open for three hours to allow proper social distance.
All appropriate Covid safe restrictions will be made (hand sanitiser, social distancing etc) and please wear face coverings if you would normally.
We know this year can’t be quite the same, but please come and join us at St John’s this Christmas.
In addition, our traditional Midnight Mass will be at 11.30pm, in part by candlelight and with wonderful Christmas music. There will be said Masses on Christmas Day at 8am and 9am, and the full Mass of Christmas day at 10am.
Come and have a full and proper Christmas at St John’s
To you all a very happy and merry Christmas
St John the Baptist, Sevenoaks
The Clergy House
62 Quakers Hall Lane
01732 451 710