Barney's parish vicar vows not to let Covid halt seasonal services
A MIX of in-church, live streams, Zoom and outside areas will be used to ensure parishioners and the wider community can take part in events at St Mary’s Church, in Barnard Castle, this autumn and winter.
Revd Canon Alec Harding said plans to ensure important dates, including Remembrance Sunday, will still be observed this year, despite restrictions because of Covid 19.
He said: “The first thing that we are recognising as we go into autumn and winter is there are a whole series of events that are affected because of Covid.
“One of the most important being Remembrance Sunday, but we are looking at new ways of doing things so they can go ahead and be special, especially this year.
“For the first time we were able to live stream a service last month, the ordination of our very own curate, Sarah Cliff. We will be using in-church, live stream and outside areas to continue in a different way.”
An All Souls Day service, when names of those who have died are read out in church, will be held on Sunday, November 1.
Mr Harding added: “This year people have lost love ones across the country, not just to Covid 19, and we will reach farther out than the parish. We want to reassure people that we, as a town, can remember, so we are working on making it happen.”
The church will be open on the afternoon for people to come with their family groups and place names to be read out on trees inside the church.
He said: “There will be limited numbers in the church for the service, but it will be live streamed and all the names will be read out.
“There is a special plan to work with the town council so Barnard Castle can do Remembrance Sunday and are working to make it happen.”
He said details will be announced closer to the time and added there are also plans in action to ensure the annual Christingle event also goes ahead.
He added: “A group is working on Christingle to make it bigger and better and it could be a lot bigger than normal.
“We want to be memory makers as one year can merge into the next but this year we want to make sure it is never forgotten.”