A letter from Revd Will Gibbs
During this time of the Coronavirus pandemic, church has had to be a little different, but it hasn’t stopped. We’ve moved online for service broadcasts and our fellowship has been through telephone conversations, emails and lovely chats from a distance when we’ve bumped into friends on our daily walk. Alongside these things, I’ve been sending occasional letters, printed service booklets and bible studies to members of St Mary’s without access to the internet. We’ve been working hard to ensure that in the worrying times we’re experiencing, we can still pray together and worship together even if we can’t be together.
At the same time, the churchyard is continuing to be maintained beautifully and flowers are being arranged in the niches at the church door each week. Thank you to everyone who is working so hard through this period in various parts of the life of our church with music, readings, prayers, administration and keeping on top of the church accounts.
It is on this last matter that I want to now turn. We are fortunate at St Mary’s to enjoy strong support for our church and, with this, strong financial support also. Many people give their stewardship by regular standing order and this has been vital in order to keep the church afloat financially. But we are missing over £1000 a month from lettings income from the Transept, and other income from donations and loose plate collections. It varies a bit from month to month but typically we’re losing somewhere between £3,000 and £4,000 a month during the lockdown. That means that if this continues, and it looks like this situation isn’t going to change anytime soon, then we are going to have used up all the money in our account.
We’ve obviously done everything we can to reduce our costs, we’ve turned the heating right down in church and in the Transept and one member of staff has been furloughed but the fact is that whilst our income has dropped, many of our costs haven’t gone down very much. We still need a Vicar (I hope!), we have higher costs for phone calls and we still need to insure our buildings.
So, can you help?
There are three ways that could make a real difference to us at this time:
- Make a one-off donation through our online giving page to help cover the costs of our ministry. This can be Gift Aided to make your kind support go even further.
- Make a donation by cheque, payable to ‘PCC St Mary’s, Redbourn’ and send it in, (and even better if you can Gift Aid it for us too). Click to download and print a gift aid form
- Set up or change your regular donation to St Mary’s. You can download the two separate forms you need to do this here and here, or contact Jim May by e-mail or on 01582 794676 with any questions.
I realise that some people are facing financial hardship through the Coronavirus pandemic but if you can help in one of these three ways, then that would be amazing.
Thank you, and please be assured of my prayers for you as you kindly pray for me also.
We long for the time when we can be back in church and back together. It will be so special and emotional but, in the meantime, please stay safe and well and do get in touch if I can help and support you with anything.
Yours, in Christ
The Parochial Church Council of the Ecclesiastical Parish of St Mary Redbourn is registered with the Charity Commission: 1130677