While we know that the Government is allowing churches to reopen for private prayer from 15 June, the Methodist Church has put in place an extensive process of risk assessment to undertake before a church’s managing trustees can agree to this. The circuit property group has been in touch with church property stewards about this already. We need to make sure that people can carry out social distancing properly and that everything can be kept properly sanitised.
We have all heard the stories about the church in Germany where a number of people became infected during worship, and we have a major responsibility to take care of people, as this can be literally a matter of life and death. It is also unlikely that a church would be insured without following the risk assessment process. We await further guidance from the Methodist Church, but in the meantime we need to prepare ourselves for the reality that our churches are going to look very different for a long time to come. It’s vital to take our time and make sure we get this right.