The escalating coronavirus ‘crisis’ presents us with many questions and challenges, including how we continue our discipleship and be church 'together' whilst we are physically apart.
Here are four simple ways to do this as the St Barnabas church family:
If this isn't to your taste you can still email, phone and zoom (video call) with us.
Francis Scott (Vicar)
St Barnabas Church
"Cast all your anxiety on him, for he cares for you" – 1 Peter 5:7
PS As we do all this, please let’s of course all be following government advice, especially about washing our hands regularly (a good opportunity to pray the Lord’s prayer as we do so), sticking to social distancing guidelines, and staying at home if ill - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/.
First, then, we should pray. Nothing matters more than our relationship with God through Jesus. Let’s keep faithful in prayer: offering ourselves to God in worship, spending time in his word, interceding for the world and all its needs.
As we pray for our community, we are also all encouraged to (carefully) place a lighted candle in our window at 7pm this Sunday, 'as a visible symbol of the light of life, Jesus Christ, our source and hope in prayer'.
Meanwhile there are some good prayer resources available for use any time at
- as well as numerous Bible reading apps available on the internet, if you don't already follow a planned Bible reading programme/ book. I can recommend the Lectio 365 app, available at
which had a special devotional for the present crisis set on 10 March.
In addition, St Barnabas church will be open as usual each day from 8.30am till c.6pm - and including now on Sunday - for private prayer (please observe the signs!), for at least the next week.
Second, we should care for one another (Galatians 6:10). Remember, we are suspending public worship primarily out of love for one another in the family, especially the vulnerable. A good number of our members are in the 70+ age bracket and will soon be effectively 'self-isolating', as will others where someone in the household may have symptoms of the virus. There will be needs such as:
If you, a member of your family, or someone you know could offer to do any of these for one or more people in our church family, please could you let me know (simply reply to this email or ring the office with your contact details) - even if (and maybe especially if) 'all' you can do is offer to keep in regular touch. And if you are already doing any of this, it would also be really helpful to know this so that as far as possible no-one 'slips through the net’.
Also, of course, if you would appreciate help in any of the above ways, please reply likewise.
Third, these times are an opportunity to serve our neighbours - as a simple act of humanity, as well as by way of witness to our faith. If you are able and willing, please print out the cards attached to this email and give or deliver them to any of your neighbours who you feel might appreciate one. Copies are also available in the church foyer. And don’t forget the ‘Food for Thought’ trolley in the church foyer, for food for Vineyard’s "Big Kitchen" project for those in particular need in Hull.
Fourth, as we do all the above, we can share the good news of Jesus in word or deed.
In 1 Peter 3:15 the apostle urges us "in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect". Let’s be prepared, in these very challenging times, to let people know who we are as church, why we do what we do, and where we find our hope.