Team News 26 April

Posted on by Tania Birtwistle

The Church continues to be alive and active, but our buildings must close

We are seeing a huge increase in the number of people falling sick with COVID-19. We must distance ourselves from one another and prevent the spread of infection in order to save lives.
Therefore, as well as public worship being suspended, this and all church buildings in the Church of England are closed. Our worship of God and our care for each other continue but cannot be done in our building. Our website contains details of how to join others online for prayer, worship, study, and community life

Services are now being live streamed using Zoom.  On Sunday 26 April, Easter 3 we will live stream a BCP Holy Communion Service at 8.00am. 
Meeting ID 882 6063 2988, Password 007380 and a CW Holy Communion Service at 9.30am. Meeting ID 880 0896 5411, Password 089676. 
There is also a Weekly Messy Church Service being streamed via Zoom. Invitations will be sent out individually by email. 
Please contact your church contact or Reverend Alan Perry if you have technical problems regarding Zoom.  We will continue to provide service materials by email, and leave paper copies in some of our church porches where they are easily accessible.
Readings for Sunday: Acts 2:14a,36-41;   1 Peter 1:17-23;  Luke 24:13-35

In an emergency

Rev Simon Pitcher can be contacted on 01502 725424 or emailing
Rev Alan Perry can be contacted on 01502 453624 or emailing
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength . .Love your neighbour as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”

Prayer pointPray for our nation and every nation as we seek to cope with the restrictions caused by the Corona Virus. We pray for those self isolating or shielding at home.  We pray and give thanks for all hospital staff, and all who are providing vital services at this time. We pray for those families who have lost someone to the virus and for those worried about the survival of their businesses or loss of their livelihood.

The May issue of Heart & Sole is now available on our website This is located on our home page, just click the Heart & Sole logo at the bottom of the page. There will not be a printed version of this issue.

Notice – Food Bank Donations The need of people relying on Food Banks has never been greater. Donations can still be left in the Porch of St Margaret’s Church. Thank you for all your support.

Blythburgh Choral Evensong – One will be released each Sunday until we are able to enjoy the service live once again.

Guidance regarding Financial Giving during the Crisis
Our churches are not immune from the same financial challenges as other institutions during this time.  Please continue to give, as is your custom,by Standing Order or the Parish Giving Scheme.  If you give weekly by envelopes please continue to do so until they can be brought to church and offered in services, once we are allowed to worship in our buildings again.  If anyone would like advice how to set up a Standing Order or join the Parish Giving Scheme please contact your PCC Treasurer or the Vicar.  Thank you for your continued support.

In response to COVID-19, APCMs not yet held should be suspended during the current situation, please follow the advice below:

1. The time for holding meetings of parishioners to choose churchwardens is extended to 31 October 2020.

2. The time for the admission of churchwardens is extended to 31 January 2021.

3. Existing 2019 churchwardens continue in office until 31 January 2021, unless re-admitted earlier or a successor is admitted earlier.

4. The period for holding APCMs is extended to 31 October 2020.

5. Existing 2017-20 lay members of deanery synod continue in office until 30 November 2020 even where their successors may have been elected at 2020 APCMs.

6. Deanery synod secretaries must provide the Diocesan office with names, addresses and emails of clergy and lay members (as per 5. above) asap and no later than 1 July 2020.

7. Unless the APCM has already been held, PCC members for 2019 will continue in office until the postponed 2020 APCM.

The current rules on safeguarding training require all PCC members to complete the online Basic Awareness and Foundation Training Courses.  If anyone is thinking of joining a PCC in one of the parishes of the Sole Bay Team now is the perfect opportunity while we are in lockdown to complete this training.  Access to the training courses can be found via the safeguarding page on the Diocesan website.  In accordance with the Bishops guidance to clergy in relation to safeguarding we cannot allow anyone who has not completed this training to take up their position on a PCC until such time as they have done so.

We would encourage parishes to submit returns by the 15 June date where 2019 financial statements have been prepared, audited or independently examined by that date, and as soon as possible after that. Many thanks Simon