Back to church!

Whether you have felt unable to come to church because the churches have been closed or you feel unsafe to meet with others inside, or it has been a long time since you entered a church – perhaps since attending or bringing your children to Sunday school – church has felt off-limits to you. The events of the last year or so have been difficult and unsettling for everyone and may have raised questions about where God, or the church, is in all this.

Our churches in the Wychwood Benefice have been continuing to worship and operate despite Covid restrictions. The church is its members – people who are looking for a relationship with God, trying to follow the example of Jesus in their lives, or maybe just looking for meaning in life. As well as a restricted number of Sunday services until recently, we have been meeting on Zoom, for Sunday services and home groups, and enjoying recordings of services on our website or Facebook, as well as keeping in touch with each other and friends in the community. For children and families we have continued to produce on-line Messy Church, also delivering a bag with instructions and materials for craft activities to the homes of the families involved. Open the Book assemblies have also continued on-line for children at Wychwood School.

We have beautiful churches in which we are now able to meet, albeit taking Covid precautions. We are grateful for these public buildings, supported by the communities, established and maintained by believers over many years, for which we are now called on to take responsibility, providing places open for everyone to use, whether for quiet prayer and contemplation, or for those important events in life, baptism of a child, weddings and blessings, funerals and memorial services.

So apart from inviting you to visit our churches, we want to welcome you to come and join us in our celebrations this autumn – celebrating Harvest Festival, to remember those who gave their lives for us on Remembrance Sunday and our nearest and dearest at All Souls, to join us in preparing Christmas shoe boxes for needy children and of course to celebrate Christmas.

We will be providing details of all these services and events on our website and Facebook page, with invitations to join us. (www.wychwoodbenefice.org.uk)

Liz Watts

August-September 2021