This week Bishop Nigel has issued further guidelines on how Churches should respond to the current Swine Flu Pandemic. These guidelines draw together advice from Governments and the NHS, the Wider Anglican Communion and the Church of England and take our local situation into account. Much advice is based on a paper prepared for the Church in Canada by Dr David Gould, and John has read this through.
The most important point is that the sharing of the bread and drinking from a shared chalice presents virtually no hazard for healthy people. Studies have shown that, even in disease epidemics, communicant Christians are no more likely to develop infection than non-communicants. This applies also to clergy and Eucharistic ministers who eat and drink the elements that remain after Communion. Nevertheless those who are ill for any cause or have a lowered resistance to infection may be at a slightly increased risk.
Taking these points and all the guidelines into account we have concluded that the most measured way forward from 26th July 2009 will be.
Should you wish to ask questions about these precautions, do contact a member of the clergy.
|Copyright © St. Mary's PCC, 2007
(contributors reserve their individual copyrights)