Advent Sunday is on 28th November, when we would normally have an Evensong. This year, we are invited to go to the special Advent Carol Service at 6:30 pm that day at St. Mary, West Harptree. Accordingly, our own service that evening will be cancelled. We often welcome the Choir to join us at Stowey; Advent Sunday will be an opportunity for us to pay a return visit! Please come if you can.

We are delighted that we will be returning to our normal schedule of services as shown below:

First Sunday of the month – 6.30pm Evensong

Second Sunday of the month – 8.30am Holy Communion [not during COVID-19 precautions]

Third Sunday of the month – no services.

Fourth Sunday of the month – 6.30pm Evensong

Below are the guidance notes we have produced which we should be grateful if you would read before attending:

To enable services to resume in Stowey Church, a group of us has completed a Risk Assessment in the form recommended by the Church of England and prepared a management plan to enable services to be held in our Church. In doing this, we’ve followed all relevant guidance and advice published by the Government and by the Church of England, aimed at minimising the risk from Covid-19. The following points are the main ones you’re asked to accept and adhere to, for the benefit of all of us.

• Please adhere to social distancing etiquette at all times. If possible, it is still 2 metres.

• Anti-viral hand gel is on the small table either outside or inside the porch. Please sanitise your hands before entering church. If you are wearing disposable gloves, please sanitise them.

• It is mandatory to use a face covering or mask when attending a service, unless you are exempt from doing so.

• When entering the church, please take a prayer book.

• You will be shown to your seat. This may not be the one you usually choose, but the seating arrangements have been devised to ensure safe distancing.

• If you are asked to read a Lesson, please can you bring your own bible or a print of the relevant passage. We normally use the King James Bible, but this is not mandatory! The Lectern has been removed, so please read from the Chancel step.

• There won’t be a Collection. Many of us have set up Standing Orders or made gifts already. For those who haven’t and wish to make an offering, please place it in the jar next to the hand gel as you leave the Church.

• At the end of the service, when the organist has finished playing, you’ll be requested to leave, pew by pew. Please remain sitting in your pew until asked to leave through the main door. Please return your prayer book to the place from which you obtained it. Try not to congregate by the porch on leaving.

• A list of names and contact details of all those attending a service will be kept for 21 days to enable us to provide this information for the NHS Track and Trace service.

We are so glad to resume services again. Please remember we’re doing all we can to manage and minimise risk. It depends on each person’s willingness to follow these directions, whatever their vaccination status! Remember especially to KEEP YOUR DISTANCE!!!

Thank you!

March 2021