A note from Rob (Vicar & Mission Leader)
These are most certainly unusual and trying times. On Tuesday the 17th of March we received instruction from the Archbishops that "public worship will have to stop for a season" and that "our usual pattern of Sunday services and other mid-week gatherings must be put on hold". Please continue to read to see the full details. There are some who will consider this overkill and others who will consider it prudent. As the challenge of the coronavirus grips the world, the Government asks every individual and every organisation to rethink its life, and so, although this is done with a heavy heart, we must do likewise in order to protect the most vulnerable in society. As we know, Jesus always favoured the cause of the vulnerable.
This will be the first of several communications. Over this period it is my intention to communicate more regularly in this manner. Other posts here on our website and our social media feeds will expand on some of the things outlined here::
In essence all of our regular central gatherings are stopping for the foreseeable future.
As from this Sunday we will be conducting simple church services in isolation at 10am on Sundays and livestreaming them on Youtube (search 'Christ the King, Kettering'). These services should also be available to view afterwards. (We are looking at ways in which we can engage with those who don't have the technology.)
We encourage Roots Groups to find alternative ways of remaining in touch (e.g. using Zoom, Skype or Facetime as well as existing WhatsApp groups) and using prayer chains or prayer trees to communicate.
We are in the process of looking at ways to make sure that those not in Roots Groups are covered by similar connection. (Perhaps this is a good time to join a Roots Group.)
Please be looking out for your neighbours (remember the contact card which we put in the last CtK:Weekly download here).
The Presidents of Churches Together in England have issued a call to prayer in the light of the current pandemic, and have designated this Mothering Sunday, 22nd March, as a National Day of Prayer and Action. At such a time as this, when so many are fearful and there is great uncertainty, we are reminded of our dependence on our loving Heavenly Father and the future that he holds. It is proposed that at 7pm this Sunday we light a candle in the windows of your homes as a visible symbol of the light of life, Jesus Christ, our source and hope in prayer.
We say that we are a community of disciples on an adventure together of becoming more like Jesus. These are certainly adventurous times and we have stormy waters to navigate. But let us remember who is with us in the storm (Matthew 8.23-27), and let us keep our eyes fixed on him (Hebrews 12.1-2). History shows that the church has a habit of flourishing in times of difficulty. We are going to have to do things differently for a period, but, if we pull together and keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, we may well find that, in spite of the difficulties, we will be able to go Deeper in our Devotion to God (as we are forced to relate to him differently), Closer in our Connections with one another (as we recognise how much we need each other), and even Further on our Frontlines as the Body of Christ serves the wider community.
Please do be patient and understanding of those of us in leadership as we make rapid decisions in an ever-changing landscape. And please pass this message on to anyone you know who doesn't have email access.
May you know God's blessing, health and strength.
Click here to see Rob's video summary of the information above.
Click here to see the statement from the Archbishops of Caterbury and York
Care for the elderly and vulnerable
We’re aware that those in the ‘at risk’ group may end up cut off, isolated and anxious if they are staying away from church events. We ask everyone to be mindful of those in our HOPE and the elderly in our Church family and community, to get in touch with them by telephone and find out if they need any help. Where consent has been given, contact details are available via Churchsuite (please contact the office for support accessing this).
We encourage anyone from this group who needs practical help, reassurance or prayer to contact there cluster or Roots group leader or the church office (01536 517553) so that we are aware of your situation. We have a prayer group and are encouraging Roots groups and community clusters to set up prayer networks and to offer help to collect groceries etc please contact the love in action team or church office if you would like to offer your support in someway.
Anyone from any group who is self-isolating should also let the office know so that we can prayer for your recovery.
Care for neighbours, friends and colleagues
This is a real opportunity to be on the lookout for people in your street or workplace who are affected in some way. Some people are dropping notes into neighbours (example offer of help leaflet ) to offer contact and practical help. Showing concern, getting to know people’s situations and offering practical help such as shopping puts our faith into action. Pray for people and if it feels appropriate, tell them that you’re praying! We encourage everyone to show there support to all the people identified as Key Worker roles at this time, pray for them and shower them with kind actions and words of encouragement.
Care for yourself
Whether or not you are self-isolating or feel ill, all of us can feel anxious at this time. This is a season to care for one another and care for ourselves.
If you have not done so already, join a roots group, follow us on Instagram, Facebook or our all new YouTube channel we hope to share a regular pattern of thoughts regularily across all thes platforms. If you are unable to aceess these or know of someone who would be encouraged through a printed form for regular prayer and Bible study please contact the office. (01536 517553 - firstname.lastname@example.org)
Perhaps this is a good time to connec with the Pulse prayer email chain or subscribe to Prayer bites. If you have any prayer needs, please contact the office and we will let the Pulse prayer chain know. If you find yourself with more available time than usual, we’d encourage you to feed you heart and soul with worship and teaching rather than Netflix or catch-up TV!