Coronavirus has forced us to change a great number of things, one of which is the way that we worship together as a church. So many of the things we so easily took for granted are no longer in place for us - for now, we don’t meet in a building, or worship in the same place. We can’t see each other’s faces, or catch up over coffee in a busy throng of expectation before we come together to sing and praise. We lose out on depths of relational and non-verbal communication within our church family; we lack hands-on prayer ministry during times of response… the list goes on.
This page will be updated as advice changes. Last updated 1 May 2020.
All of us are keen to follow the teaching of Jesus to love our neighbour. But how do we do that in the current pandemic, in a way that is loving and caring, and doesn't harm our neighbour, ourselves, or the wider community?
In this, OCC is not an expert! Our headline is to FOLLOW GOVERNMENT ADVICE - in what follows we're going to highlight government advice, and give you the links so you can dig deeper as you need.
In a 24-7 prayer week slot with my Community (group), we were listening to God and in the silence I could hear our old wind-up clock ticking, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick…
I remembered how the people of the whole world are always thinking about what is next, what is coming, what we will do, where we will go, where we will travel, what work we will do next, so on and so forth, endlessly.
Through this pandemic, I think God wants to put his finger on the mechanism of that clock, and stop it. Stop us, stop our constant action, and make us still. Then we asked what is next?!
An update after the 'lockdown' announcement from the government last night (Mon 23 March)!
Firstly, we're very grateful for the team we have in OCC - volunteers and staff - such that we've been able to respond to two massive changes of government policy over the last 8 days.
Many of the parents in OCC are having to adjust to a life as 'home-schoolers'. We asked Ruth, part of the OCC leadership team, and a long-term elective home educator, for some helpful advice!
Dear OCC family
Each of you will be aware of the rapidly changing situation relating to Coronavirus (Covid-19). We are following the updates and advice closely and are keen to respond fully to the challenge that we face as a nation. It’s clear that our community life will be severely affected by yesterday’s guidance to minimise social contact and avoid unnecessary social gatherings (link).
Tuesday 17 March: We are examining the latest advice from the Government and Public Health England and will update this page as soon as possible.
Along with other organisations, OCC staff have been keeping a close eye on the emerging international situation with coronavirus. We monitor advice provided by Public Health England (PHE), and church-specific advice published by the Church of England and by Evangelical Alliance. Apparently, one Church of England vicar is a former Deputy Chief Medical Officer, so her advice is both expert medical and pastoral!