Update from Frances regarding Mask Wearing in Church

Dear Friends,

At a recent meeting, the churchwardens and I made the momentous decision to remove the long-standing recommendation for everyone to wear a mask when attending services or activities at St Andrew’s, Oxshott. This means that anyone who wishes to continue to wear a mask may do so but there is no need for everyone to do this. To mitigate this relaxation, we will maintain good ventilation, for services in particular.

Among the first hymns we sang together in worship without our masks was ‘Lord, for the years’ by Timothy Dudley-Smith. The words of the first verse are as follows:

Lord, for the years your love has kept and guided,
urged and inspired us, cheered us on our way,
sought us and saved us, pardoned and provided:
Lord of the years, we bring our thanks today.

which are such a powerful reminder of all that God has done for us in Jesus. We do also thank the Lord for being with us through the past two difficult years.

Please remember that we continue to hold a quiet, said service of Holy Communion using traditional liturgy on Wednesdays at 11.30am. In this service we continue to socially distance and observe all hygiene protocols so that we are able to include anyone who remains especially vulnerable to Covid and any other infections. If you know someone for whom this might be relevant, please pass on our invitation for them to join us!

Of course, the Covid pandemic is not over, and the churchwardens and I will remain alert to government and diocesan advice about re-introducing guidelines if and when these become necessary. We ask too that if you have any Covid symptoms you refrain from on-site attendance and, if you are able, take a lateral flow test before re-joining activities and services. Please feel free to contact us via the church office if anything is unclear.