I had the opportunity to read the letter the Archbishops of Canterbury and York sent to clergy in England yesterday, 17th March, to offer advice and encouragement in this difficult time. It prompted me to share some of what was written which I hope will be of value.
We are reminded that church is going to look and feel very different in the days ahead. Church life is going to be less characterised by attendance at church on Sunday, and more characterised by the prayer and service we offer each day. We may not be praying in the ways we are used to, but we can certainly continue to pray!
We should focus on caring for the vulnerable – in the church community and the wider community – then by our service – and by our love, Jesus Christ will be made known, and the hope of the Gospel – a hope that will counter fear and isolation – will spread across our land. This may be a defining moment for the church – are we a church for all, or just a church for ourselves.
The Archbishops urged us to become a different sort of church in the coming months – hopeful and rooted in the offering of prayer ad praise and overflowing in service to the world.