Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Latest Guidance

eNews 29 May, 2020

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Pentecost Live Stream - Get Involved
Do join both Bishop James and Bishop Emma for a special interactive Pentecost time of reflection, discussion and prayer this Sunday.

Both bishops will be joined by the Rev Godfrey Butland and the Rev Robin Ham to hear how things have been for their churches during the pandemic and a time of prayer will be led by Valerie Hallard. 

Those people without a Facebook account can still watch the live stream by clicking here and THERE'S STILL TIME TO SEND IN PRAYER REQUESTS, REFLECTIONS AND QUESTIONS BY EMAILING HERE. WE'D LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU!

It takes place on Sunday 31 May at 7pm, offering people across the Diocese a chance to join together to discuss things such as:
  • how we are coping as churches during the coronavirus pandemic
  • how as church we are reaching out to our communities at this time
  • a chance to share together our questions and comments 
  • and to pray together for our churches, communities, diocese and world.
Pentecost - Come, Holy Spirit
Bishop Emma has put together a short Pentecost prayer video  - which can be viewed below and is available on the Diocesan YouTube channel.

It gathers together responses from friends across the world to her request for people join together in the prayer: Come, Holy Spirit.

Meanwhile a filmed sermon has also been shared with clergy as a downloadable file for use this Sunday as part of their online worship on Pentecost Sunday, or to share it on their social medial channels.
Pentecost Prayers - Come Holy Spirit
Pray24Cumbria - Your Prayer Is Valued
Prayer requests have been received from those in our emergency services, NHS, tourism, agriculture and schools as we prepare for a Cumbria-wide 24 hour prayer relay.

As part of the ecumenical initiative Pray24Cumbria we are asking people to sign up for one hour prayer slots over 24 hours from 10am on May 30 to 10am on May 31 - Pentecost . To sign up for a prayer slot click here.

And there's been a wonderful reaction from groups across the county who have been asked for their specific prayer pointers and requests. Click here to see a full list of prayer requests.

People can still share poster and logo resources which have been created to encourage others to join. 
Click here to 'book' a prayer slot for Pray24Cumbria!
New Covid-19 Guidance From the National Church
The National Church has released another four guidance papers to help all parish churches during lockdown, and as we start to plan to come out of lockdown. The guidance covers:
In terms of worship, it remains the case that only clergy may enter a church building for the purposes of their own private prayer or to stream worship.

If required, one member of the clergy's household may enter the church with the clergy member, and only where this is necessary for filming worship for streaming.
Stewardship During Covid Webinars
A reminder that we are are holding two Stewardship webinars titled 'Stewardship during Covid-19' to explore how the local church can respond effectively and sensitively to these challenges at this time. 

The webinars will take place on Tuesday 2nd June at 1.30pm and then repeated at 3.30pm and will cover:

1. Bigger picture: why do we need to think about generosity and giving during church closures? 
2. Practical ideas of how we can do this effectively and sensitively during the covid-19 pandemic.
3. Plenty of opportunities for questions.

The webinars are particularly aimed at clergy and treasurers, but will be relevant to anyone involved in the life of their local church.

To book a place, email Please give your name, the parish you are from and which webinar you would like to attend. 
South Lakes Alpha Online
South Lakes Churches are very excited to be running Alpha Online to invite friends to explore a conversation about life, faith and God. This will be launching on Wednesday 3rd June. 

For more details visit: - to register on this site enter "Newby Bridge" into the location field and you will find the South Lakes course. Alternatively, for more information please contact David Spiby at
Message for Treasurers: Parish Finance Returns
You will be aware that each year parishes are asked to complete a Parish Return of Finances, submitting basic financial information from your church accounts. This helps the Church of England nationally, and the Diocese locally, understand the financial context our parishes are operating in and how this should shape our plans and strategies going forward. In many cases, coronavirus has affected PCC's ability to put together accounts and have the necessary PCC meetings. Therefore, the Church of England has issued this guidance about 2020 Parish Finance Returns:
  •  The deadline for submitting parish returns is now extended to 31 July 2020.
  • Usually we ask for figures based on your independently examined accounts. However, if the independent examination of your accounts has been postponed beyond 31 July, please still submit your Finance Return. There is a comments box on the form where you can mention these figures have not been independently examined. 
  • You do not need to wait for your APCM before submitting your returns
  • Figures submitted in your Finance Return should be based on accounts approved by your PCC. During lockdown, this approval could be via an online meeting or email
To submit your Finance Return please visit

If you need support filling in your Finance Return, or logging onto the system, please contact our Diocesan Administration, Secretariat & Governance Manager, Cath Bell, at

Thank you!
A Network Youth Church Reflection
Thank you to Yvette Ladds, the leader of Solway Network Youth Church, for this reflection on how they are continuing to reach out to young people during the coronavirus pandemic.

Whilst connection may have been temporarily lost with some on the fringe, much work continues to reach out to young people through regular Zoom cells and the offering up of resources.

Yvette also reflects on the impact that COVID-19 has had on the young in particular, noting: "Many young people have been hit with the exams not going ahead. This has been a hard time for them. They have worked so hard and now feel disappointed that they can't finish that process and see it through. Please hold them in your prayers as the uncertainly for what they are moving on to in the future is hard." 

Read Yvette's full reflection about her work with Solway Network Youth Church by clicking here.
Coronavirus - Prayer Diary

Please do continue to use and share as widely as possible the prayer which has been composed for Cumbria, as follows:
Loving God, as your Son healed the sick
And brought good news to the needy
Be with us this day.
Loving Jesus as you taught us to
‘Do unto others as you would have them do to you’
Be with all the medical staff this day.
Loving spirit, your gift is healing,
Bring your healing fire to our homes, our hospitals and our county,
But most of all, be with us this day. Amen
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