|Cashel Union of Parishes|
Guidance for parishioners as we prepare to return to In-church Worship
Regular postings in the Sunday Pew Sheet and monthly newsletter Directions, as well as on our website, have kept parishioners informed about our reasons for our cautious approach to reopening our churches for public worship. We are now ready to do so on a phased basis, beginning with Cashel Cathedral on Sunday 19th & 26th July. Below you will see the schedule for the rest of the summer assuming there are no further restrictions imposed by our government in the meantime.
This re-opening is undertaken paying careful attention to public health guidance and mindful that we will need to implement appropriate measures to ensure the health and well-being of our congregation, those leading our worship and of all who are serving in a voluntary capacity. This will necessarily mean that there will be significant changes to some aspects of the normal relaxed and familiar feeling that we enjoy as part of our Sunday morning celebration. Hopefully it will not detract too much from the joy and celebration of our worship as we get used to those changes.
We are putting the following guidance in place, not to make things purposely difficult and uncomfortable, but for everyone’s benefit, and we would ask you to kindly take note of these if you are planning to return to worship in any of our churches when they reopen.
1. We are all well aware of this message, but it bears repeating: if you have a fever or cough or any other symptoms associated with Covid-19 please stay at home. You are very welcome to continue to join us via our podcast service, details of which are emailed weekly to those on our mailing list. (Please contact the Dean if you would like to be added to that list)
2. Please note that we will be limited to 50 people in the congregation, even though social distancing in our churches with individuals attending is well below that figure! . We do not anticipate that we will need to have a ‘pre-booking’ system, but if we find that the response to returning to in-church worship in the coming weeks exceeds the current social-distancing capacity limits we may need to introduce such a system. We thank you in advance for your patience. The current circumstances in which we find ourselves are new for us as well!
When you arrive:
1. Entrance for the service will be via the main door. If you arrive early please be mindful of social distancing of 2 meters while waiting.
2. Upon arrival please use the hand sanitiser provided.
3. Service sheets will be set out on the seats indicating where you may sit, rather than being distributed at the door. After you enter please take a seat straight away beginning from the front of the church, observing those pews and seats where you are requested not to sit. Church Wardens will be available to assist you.
4. We are required to maintain a register of attendees for the purpose of contact tracing. Please bring with you a piece of paper containing your name, contact telephone number and the date you attend and place it in the box on arrival. This information will be retained confidentially for 3 weeks and then will be destroyed.
5. Please note that there will be no toilet facilities available.
During the service:
1. Whilst it is not compulsory we kindly request that all who are able to do so wear a face covering when attending the service.
2. If you find that you are feeling unwell and begin to display symptoms of Covid-19, and are with someone and able to make your way home safely please do so.
3. If you find that you are feeling unwell and begin to display symptoms of Covid-19, but do not have anyone to assist you home, please go to the entrance porch where someone will assist you. You will be provided with a disposable mask if you are not already wearing a face covering.
4. There will be no congregational singing for the time being.
5. The customary sharing of the sign of the peace will not take place. Smiles and verbal greetings at that point of the service are welcome!
6. For hygiene reasons, communion will be in one kind only. Please remain seated and listen to the guidance given by the Presiding Minister regarding the distribution of the sacrament.
7. No collection plate will be passed during the service. A basket for a retiring collection will be available at the back of church as you leave. Additionally, you may wish to consider setting up a standing order for regular giving or a regular bank transfer. If you would like to do this, please contact your parish treasurer who will assist you with this.
At the End of the service:
1. There will be no hospitality following services, and the person leading the service will not be greeting you as you leave the church.
2. Following the service please take your service sheet and any other items you have used with you for disposal at home and leave via the main door. Exiting the church w