News & Events








INTERIM MODERATOR

The Rev. Neil Watson  (minister for Bellhaven with Spott Parish Church) has been appointed as interim moderator during the period of vacancy. The kirk session met with him (via zoom) on Thursday 17th September to consider the future of church services during the COVID 19 restrictions. The session decided to resume Sunday services as soon as possible. There will be no further Wednesday services. Watch this News page and the Services page for news of when the first services will be held.

Message from Neil Watson

Hi there, some of you will already know me and tuned into our Sunday morning service last week but I am Neil H Watson, the minister of Belhaven with Spott, and have been appointed by the Presbytery to act as your Interim Moderator during your vacancy. I hope and pray that you do not find yourself in vacancy for very long, not to ensure that my workload is lighter more quickly(!) but because I am aware that it can be a time of uncertainty and from the interactions, I've had so far, I am sure that you will be eager to build upon the work and ministry of Erica as quickly as you can. While we go about the business of appointing a locum and setting up in person services in Tranent, you are more than welcome to join us on the Belhaven Parish Facebook page for Sunday morning worship services at www.facebook.com/belhavenparish the service goes live just before 10am. Equally for those without internet, you can phone in for the service on 01368 652696. Please let as many people who might benefit from this know about the telephone line. As a point of information, my usual days off are a Monday and most Saturdays but I am always contactable for any urgent pastoral issues. My telephone number is 01368 860672 and my email address is nwatson@churchofscotland.org.uk so please do get in touch with me if you need to. Finally, I am very much looking forward to working with the Kirk Session and getting to know as many of you as I can over the next few months.


Yours in Jesus,

Neil





NEWSLETTER August 2020

Dear Member,

First tentative steps to re-opening the Church during Covid-19 pandemic

On 28 July, the Kirk Session met by Zoom and decided to try opening our church sanctuary again for at least 4 services.  We plan to hold a 30-minute service at 7pm on Wednesdays 19th & 26th August which will be recorded, then repeat the Wednesday services at 11am on Sundays 23rd & 30th with the recordings also being released via Youtube at 11am on a Sunday.

If you are unwell in any way you should not attend church and it’s important that each person in our congregation makes a sensible decision for themselves as to whether their own situation regarding health, age, family etc will allow them to attend church safely. If you are sure that attending worship is the right decision for you, please read on so that you get a sense of what church will look like when you do come along. It will be very different to what church is normally like – but this has to be the “new normal” for now.  It’s either that or we remain closed.

Here is the procedure we will need to follow to comply with Government & Church of Scotland rules, designed to keep services safe for all :

·      Whoever wishes to attend a service will have to ‘book’ a seat by phoning Christine Young on 07467 470305 between 1-2pm or 8-9pm on a Monday (to book for Wed) OR between 1-2pm or 8-9pm on a Thursday (to book for Sunday). Booking will open on Monday 17th August.  You MUST BOOK A SEAT before coming along as we have had to limit seats to place them 2m apart. ONLY THOSE WHO HAVE BOOKED WILL BE ABLE TO ENTER.  When you phone to book, you will need to give your own name, surname & phone number and tell Christine how many people from your household are coming (for Test & Protect). People from the same household can sit together but you will not be able to choose your seat/congregate with others.

·      Doors will open 30 minutes before each service (6.30pm for 7/ 10.30am for 11): if you arrive early, you will have to queue outside at a 2m distance.

·      Everyone will need to wear a face covering unless medically exempt.

·      We are not allowed to hug, shake hands, gather to chat or share any paper such as orders of service/church hymn books or Bibles.  There will be music during the service but singing isn’t allowed yet.

·      You will be asked to take note of the information posters and sanitise your hands on entering the church.

·      The Duty Team will usher you through the gathering area – where there will be a plate for you to place any offerings you wish to give - and show you to a seat in the sanctuary. There will be no personal choice because seats must be filled in a certain order to avoid people passing each other. Any young people attending must stay in their seat next to their parent/guardian for the duration of the service.

·      When the service is over, everyone must wait until the Minister has left the chancel via the aisle, then the Duty Team leader will guide people out one at a time, starting at the back, keeping 2m distance.

·      You will be asked to sanitise your hands on leaving the building.

·      Only one toilet (disabled) will be available. You will be asked to sanitise surfaces after using it: one of the Duty Team will guide you.

PLEASE BEAR IN MIND THAT AS CIRCUMSTANCES CHANGE DURING THIS PANDEMIC, THESE PLANS MAY HAVE TO BE REVISED.  DO CHECK THE LATEST INFORMATION BEFORE COMING TO CHURCH. INFO WILL BE ON OUR WEBSITE & FACEBOOK PAGE OR IF YOU DON’T HAVE INTERNET, PHONE YOUR ELDER TO CHECK THE LATEST NEWS.

 

Scripture verse: “God gave Solomon wisdom and very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore.” (1 Kings 4:29) How we need the wisdom of Solomon in these days! Please bear with your Kirk Session as we try to do the best we can in very difficult circumstances. Keep in touch via your Elder if you have any concerns.

Let’s pray:  Living God, we thank you that your Spirit binds us together as one family, no matter where we are. Give us your wisdom as we take these first steps towards reopening our church, in Jesus’ name. Amen.



CORONAVIRUS ADVICE

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly or use gel disinfectant.
  • Self-isolate if you suspect infection.
  • Avoid any physical contact with others (unless you live with them and they are free of symtoms) and maintain 2 meters separation.
  • Please maintain telephone (or video link) contact with elderly / infirm people.