We live in strange times. On the one hand, there appears to be light at the end of this strange tunnel we have been traversing. Little by little restrictions are being lifted, shops, restaurants, pubs, gyms, theatres and cinemas are open for custom, spectators may attend some sports events. It is even possible to travel abroad – within limitations.
On the other hand, we are all only too aware of this Indian virus variant that has already arrived on our island and is a dark threat to hoped-for freedom. As many of us pull at the bit desperate for the restoration of normality, others hesitate in fear.
Yesterday, the government released the good news that, after the 2nd dose, our Covid vaccine appears to be 88% effective against the new variant. Praise God! The truth is that all this has been a timely reminder that we live on a global village. John Donne wrote:
“No man is an island entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main… …any man’s death diminishes me.”
Fortunately, the World Health Organisation understands this and is attempting to address the problem of world vaccination. May God uphold, protect and guide them and those like them who carry such heavy burdens of responsibility.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” John 3; 16-17.
The church is now open for live worship every Sunday and for private prayer on Thursdays.
Due to limited seating, places may be reserved by contacting Julie on a first come, first served basis. As before, we urge you if you have an invitation not to forget and if you are suddenly unable to attend to let us know at the earliest possible moment. Face masks continue to be required. If you see anyone not wearing a face mask, it is because they have medical exemption. We are not allowing any other exception. It is imperative the rules are strictly adhered to. This means gelling hands immediately upon arrival, taking your pew straight away as directed by the steward including whether to sit by the wall or the aisle; not moving from your place at any point during the service; and leaving promptly afterwards.
To reserve a seat please contact Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org or 07756 918847.
After booking a seat, if you find that you are unable to attend a service please inform one of the churchwardens so that it can be offered to another person.
Having had empty pews in previous weeks, we are looking to put together a reserve list of those people who are willing to be contacted at short notice to attend a service. If you would like to be included on this list then please let Julie know.
If you would like to attend a service at St Andy’s please contact Julie as she will be taking bookings. Please contact email@example.com or 07756 918847.
Our next Children’s service will take place in church on Sunday 6th June. If you would like to reserve a place, please contact Julie before Wednesday 2nd June on 07756 918847 or firstname.lastname@example.org
After this date there may still be places so, please contact Becky Crowe on 07875 552518 or email@example.com
The Future – Finding a New Vicar
On Friday the advertisement for a vicar for St Andrew’s has been placed in the Church Times newspaper and on the Coventry Diocese website. The advert will run over four weeks and the accompanying Parish Profile will help people to see who we are, and how God equips us in our church and community. Please continue to pray that God is calling the person who will work with us to serve God in our church and parish.
St Andrew’s PCC
At the APCM last Monday evening a new PCC was elected to serve our church in the coming year. The following people are PCC members:
Nick Tooby and Becky Crowe (Church Wardens), Lesley Lee and Sue Masters (Readers), Charley Watts (Deanery Synod), Linda Chylinski, Trevor Hill, Richard Marr, Paul Crowe, Diane Wilson, John Ross-Barnard, Rita Muir, Penny Wakefield, Clive Murden, Julia McNaney and Jeremy Thomas.
We thank them for their willingness to serve God and our church and ask you please to pray for them in their role as leaders of our church.
From 17th May stage three on the road map comes into place. Coventry Council’s public health team have given us the following advice.
We encourage you to socially distance from those outside of your household, continue to wear face masks in venues that these are required in and wash your hands regularly. We also encourage everyone to now be ensuring that they have a lateral flow test twice a week to help control the spread of the virus.
Hugging, embracing and handshaking has been prohibited since the start of the pandemic as it is known to transmit infection. It is advisable that physical contact such as hugging embracing and handshaking is as limited as possible. People have been longing to hug embrace and shake hands, it is advisable that for the time being this is restricted to people in your family/household/support bubble.
Physical contact greetings (hug, embrace handshake) should be the very rare exception not the norm and it is suggested you use other types of greetings such as a wave or the elbow bump. This will help to keep the transmission of Covid as low as possible.
Recruitment of Volunteers at St Andrew’s and St Andy’s
We would like to highlight that all church volunteers must be safely recruited and some volunteers are also required to undergo a DBS check and complete safeguarding modules. This isn’t St Andrew’s being picky, it is a legal requirement stipulated by the diocese for every volunteer role.
As lockdown eases, we must now be vigilant and ensure all the necessary checks are completed.
If you are a church volunteer and have not yet been safely recruited, please contact Julie (Parish Administrator) at firstname.lastname@example.org or Linda Chylinski (Parish Safeguarding Officer) at email@example.com to arrange for this to be completed.
All members of the PCC must ensure that they complete Parish Safeguarding module C0 (Basic safeguarding Awareness) which is available online.
With the church now open for public worship we are seeing an increase in requests for baptisms and therefore have an urgent need to add some people to our Baptism Verger rota. Baptisms take place after the morning service on Sundays usually at 12 noon and last about an hour to hour and half. If you are interested, please let Julie or the Churchwardens know and training can be arranged. This role is important as you will be the welcoming face of St Andrew’s to people who may not have been to church before. A fixed rate is paid for each baptism.
We are also looking for a Baptism Visitor. This volunteer role involves contacting families to meet with them to obtain details for the baptism and assisting with baptism preparation. If you are interested, please contact Julie for a full job description.
Cleaning the Church
As we are opening the church again from Easter Day, our thoughts are turning back to cleaning the building. Currently, we have a very small team who are on the rota to clean once a week. The team is Phil and Denise Davies, Diane Wilson, Becky Crowe and I who clean on a voluntary basis. Ideally, we would like to add some more volunteers to help us.
It normally takes a couple of hours to clean the church and side room (we are not cleaning upstairs currently) to make sure it is ready for a service on Sunday.
Cleaning of the building is important at the moment, not just to show visitors that the church is cared for, but also as part of the arrangements to allow us to open the church safely. Would you be able to help? If so, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you, Nick Tooby
Building our Faith
Our zoom Bible study continues this Wednesday at 7.30pm. The theme is The Holy Spirit and all are welcome to join us.
The zoom access codes are available from Sue Masters on 07958 322026.
We are looking to safer recruit volunteers for our Youth work. If you feel you could help with either the Drama Club, Rock Solid or the Youth Wellbeing course then please get in touch with Emma at email@example.com
Have you ever thought about joining a book club, been a member of one in the past or thought that’s not for me? Is now the time to think about being part of St. Andrew’s book club?
We set up the book club two years ago and although interrupted briefly by Covid have continued to meet over zoom. Some members have recently left the area and so we are relaunching and looking to encourage more people to join.
Our next meeting is on Tuesday 8th June at 7.30pm on zoom (We hope to resume in person meetings at a later date). The book we have chosen is The Shack by William P Young. This is a novel published in 2008 and is a story of how a grief-stricken man’s encounter with God changes his life forever. You may have read it before but we felt it was worth revisiting.
We would love more people to join with us to read and discuss the book. If you have any questions, please contact Sue Masters on 07958 322026.
Please pray for St Andrew’s as we now seek to find a new vicar.
Do send Julie your favourite bible verses or hymn verses, names for prayer and any birthdays, celebrations or articles for inclusion in the bulletin. Julie can be contacted on 07756 918847 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Churchwardens: Nick Tooby – 07951 925772 and Becky Crowe – 07875 552518
Parish Administrator: Julie Crow – 07756 918847