Statement from the Leadership Team on 22nd July 2021 about Covid restrictions in church:
The BU guidance and the advice from
scientists and doctors and statements from government is in general agreement
about COVID-19 precautions. It is now legal to dispense with masks and social
distancing and other precautions as of the 19th. It is not recommended,
however, by government or any other group. The Leadership Team are agreed,
therefore, that for the time being we will maintain our anti-COVID precautions.
We will continue to wear masks, sit in socially distanced household groups, use
hand sanitiser and we will continue to clean/sanitise the church and ventilate
the church to minimise any possible build-up of virus particles.
We realise that some amongst you wish to begin singing again but the 'aerosol effect' of singing is pronounced and represents a special risk. We have therefore decided to permit singing as long as it is behind a mask. This is not ideal, we know, but represents a compromise between caution and the desire for greater freedom of collective worship. Our singing will not be led by a worship group, we shall continue to use YouTube videos. This is simply because we would need to isolate each member of the worship group within their own screened area and we do not have the space to do that.
Although continuing our anti-COVID precautions is disappointing, we feel we have a duty of care towards our church family (as we are urged in the BU guidance), many of whom are of an older generation and most at risk of serious disease, despite having been vaccinated. We also have to recognise the risk of long COVID, which is a threat to younger people. We, the trustees, will continue to monitor the situation over the next 8 to 10 weeks. We hope and pray that the current spike in infections will be turned around and the infection rate will drop. As soon as we feel it is safe to do so, we will begin to ease up on our precautions.
We are concerned by the rate of increase in infections in the Ashford area (and, indeed, all through the UK). The rate in the Ashford area has been doubling (or more) week on week for the past month. We urge you all to remain cautious, wear masks and always observe social distancing outside your homes. We ask that you all pray that the current wave of infection will not increase to a point where a new lockdown is imposed and or that we have to close the church for physical worship once again.
I would like to take this opportunity to remind all of you who attend our ‘in person’ worship services that socialising inside the building is still not appropriate. We understand the desire to socialise with others but ask that you should do so outside in the garden rather than in the church building. People chatting at close quarters inside may represent a greater risk than singing – with or without a mask!
Church Secretary - on behalf of the Leadership Team
Whoever you are and wherever you are from, you will always be very welcome to join us at SABC. We believe that God draws people from all nations and backgrounds to be part of His family, and we love to welcome those who move to our town from different parts of the world and who are looking for a new spiritual home within a growing Christian family.
If you wish to hire our facilities, please contact Mr Gerard Sigfrid, Church Secretary, on 07769997001 ( mobile) 01233 650118 ( landline) or email him here.
We take safeguarding seriously here at SABC, and we follow the safeguarding policy and procedures of the Baptist Union of Great Britain for children and vulnerable adults. For further information see this link.
We understand life can be difficult and circumstances very challenging on occasion. However, please note that we do not give out food or money from the church premises.
That does not mean we don't care, though, or don't want to help you. Please see the 'if you need help with things' section of this website for more details.