OUR CHURCHES AS PLACES OF PRAYER
• On Monday 20th May, the Northern Ireland Executive permitted the re-opening of Churches for personal/solitary prayer. Following-on from this decision, Bishop Treanor issued guidelines to parishes in the Diocese of Down & Connor for the purpose of church re-opening.
• Five of the six parish churches within our Pastoral Community have already re-opened for personal prayer. Parishioners have expressed delight in the fact that their church has now returned to being a place of prayer.
• The majority of respondents to the recent survey conducted by the Pastoral Council suggested that Saint Colman’s Church should re-open for prayer. I thank those who took part in the survey.
• It is proposed that Saint Colman’s will also re-open in the coming days. In fact, practical preparations have been completed for re-opening.
• The proposal is that the Church would be open on Monday and Friday afternoons at first instance, with the possibility that weekend provision could also be offered.
• Volunteers will be required to act as stewards during the times of opening. The role will include providing direction and guidance to visitors, ensuring that the seating areas are sanitised, ensuring that a one-way system within the church building is observed, ensuring social distancing of visitors and providing a vigilant presence for the safety of all who visit the church during the hours when the church will be open. The health and safety of visitors to the church is paramount.
• I wish to thank those who have volunteered already.
• If you would to present yourself as a volunteer for this purpose, please contact me at Saint Luke’s Parish Office on 02890 619459 or alternatively email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
• It is essential that volunteers are not in the ‘vulnerable’ category as defined by government advice in relation to age or health condition.
• The more volunteers we have, then the longer and more frequently the church can be open for personal/solitary prayer.
Many thanks for considering this role.
Administrator of Derriaghy Parish