"A warm welcome to the church of St Mary's, Holy Island. Our church is open daily to welcome visitors. Come and explore our history, reflect on our Christian story and faith and take a moment to enjoy the stillness and tranquillity of this sacred place."
The Archbishops and Bishops of the Church of England have urged everyone (24 March 2020) to follow the instructions given by the Prime Minister to stay in their homes in a national effort to limit the transmission of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
But they called on the Church to “continue to pray, to love, to care for the vulnerable”.
It follows the announcement by the Prime Minister Boris Johnson of sweeping restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.
It means all Church of England churches will close with immediate effect in line with the Government’s instructions. There will also be no weddings or baptisms.
Funerals can still go ahead but within strict limits with only the closest family in attendance and essential physical distancing measures in place.
In a joint statement the bishops said: “In the light of the Government’s measures, announced by the Prime Minister, we urge everyone to follow the instructions given.
“We will give a fuller statement of advice as soon as possible. Let us continue to pray, to love, to care for the vulnerable, and build our communities, even while separated.”
For more information, please see: www.newcastle.anglican.org
We will keep you updated as things progress.
A prayer from Holy Island: Lord, help us to be with one another…even if at a physical distance. Help us to build a kinder world. To reach out. To love and to care. To be sensible and not to panic. Help us, Lord, to hope. Because together we can. Amen.
Revd Dr Sarah Hills
Vicar of St Mary the Virgin, Holy Island
A plea from Holy Island Parish Council...
Plea to visitors and holiday home/let owners:
Please do not come to Holy Island during the Coronavirus crisis.
Following increasing concern over the number of visitors to the island and government guidance on public health and the coronavirus, the Holy Island Parish Council has issued an urgent plea to anyone thinking of visiting the island.
Isolated from main medical services and with 60% of our community classified as vulnerable because of underlying medical conditions or age, the Holy Island Parish Council has to do everything we can to protect our residents. While the crisis continues, please follow Government advice about non-essential travelling and:
Day visitors - a simple message: Please don’t come at all. All facilities are closed.
Holiday let owners – please cancel all bookings until further notice.
Holiday home owners – we look forward to seeing you again as soon as possible but, for the moment, you and we are safer if you remain at home.
Please respect our wishes and help us to look after our vulnerable residents.
Robert Coombes, Chair of the Holy Island Parish Council, said: “The Holy Island of Lindisfarne is a beautiful place to visit but we need to keep the island community safe and we urge everyone to heed the government’s advice and to only travel if it’s absolutely essential. Please stay away from Holy Island.”
Revd Dr Canon Sarah Hills said: “A support group has been set up on the island to help residents during the crisis and the group strongly supports the message from the parish council.”
Villages by the Sea
'Villages by the Sea': 7:30pm, March 12 on BBC Two features Holy Island and some lovely images and interviews. Our episoide is 'choice of the day' in the Radio Times. You can watch it here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000c7m1
A Community Prayer for Mothering Sunday 2020
Let us give thanks for the mothering that gives us joy
Let us share the gifts of care and love with our neighbours
Let us take time to see beauty on our doorsteps
Let us be a community of strength and peace.
Holy Island Support Group
In response to the Coronavirus crisis, representatives of the island community have formed the Holy Island Support Group.
Our aim is to help support each other, to help in practical ways, and to provide comfort and avenues for advice in these trying times. The group is open to all who would like to help.
We are coordinating our response for:
1. Those who feel they need help and support (e.g. self-isolating or unable to go out) and
2. Those who are able to offer help and support in various ways
Letters have been delivered to the community’s residents offering support with the details of people who can help. If you are on the island and need practical help or other support, please get in touch.
We also provide an ‘if needed’ supply of basic food items and toiletries on the island, to purchase, in case people cannot go to the shops.
Advice on coronavirus is available at NHS.UK
Revd Dr Canon Sarah Hills
Chair of the Holy Island Support Group
News in brief...
Revd Canon Dr Sarah Hills, is one of the authors of a letter: Call to Action in times of Transition and Change - you can read the full letter on our news page.
For more information on our events and news, please see our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pg/StMarysHolyIsland/events/
Worship for Weekdays
8am: Morning Prayer: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
8am: Holy Communion: Wednesday.
5.30pm: Evening Prayer: daily.
8.00am: Holy Communion (BCP)
10.45am: Holy Communion
5.30pm: Evening Prayer
Please note: any changes to service times or additional services will be posted on the noticeboard inside the church.