Welcome to our Website

Hello:

The Higherland Church has been on this site and has been an essential part of our community for over 190 years.

Our Worship: SUNDAY SERVICES HAVE NOW BEEN REINSTATED

but due to the ongoing corona virus situation, please read the letter below / right. Also, for those unable to be with us for worship, we continue to offer online worship arrangements: go to our Services Details page for the information regarding both our own and the Circuit worship.

As part of the North Staffordshire Circuit, we have varied worship from very traditional through to contemporary media. We’re noted for our enthusiastic singing; you’ll find a warm welcome ~ it’s impossible to get in without several greetings ~ and we hope you’ll enjoy worshipping with us.

What else:

All the usual stuff, as you’ll see on our web pages, but plenty for all ages ~ Bible Studies; Prayer meetings held at different churches in the Circuit; Fellowship meetings; Lunches [and other catering]

Contact us for details at higherlandchurch@gmail.com

Sunday Worship:

10:00a.m. is our only service. We would normally include a crèche facility for young children where they can play in a safe, child-friendly environment, but not at present.

For children and young people up to 11 years there is 'Kids Fun Church' which gives them the opportunity to take part in games and art & craft activities and to learn about the Christian faith. Check-out our 'Kids Fun Church' page.

This too is temporarily suspended.

Our 6:00p.m. services have been temporarily put on-hold.

Please note that all our leaders, for Kids Fun Church, Crèche, Boys’ Brigade and Girls’ Association, and the Parent & Toddler group [PATCH]have a current CRB check [now DBS], and are committed to providing a safe environment in which children can have fun while they learn and mature.

Many of our folk are covered for the care of other vulnerable people - part of the Circuit / Methodist Church Safeguarding Strategy - not just children - and this is kept under review.

For more information about the Methodist Church in this area, contact the Chester and Stoke District at chester.stoke@btconnect.com or view their site at www.chestokemethodists.com

For information about the Methodist Church in general visit www.methodist.org.uk

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

Rev. Christine Legge

Tel. 01782 631918

Dear Higherland Friends, 23 July 2020

If you are considering returning to worship it is VITALLY IMPORTANT that you read and understand the following:

A Re-opening team of folk have met twice to plan and prepare a Risk Assessment and an Action Plan to enable the Church to re-open for Sunday worship and this will begin on Sunday 2 August at 10a.m. Due to Covid-19 restrictions there will be quite a lot of changes, so please don’t expect everything to be back to normal, sadly it won’t be so for sometime. And this is the reason for this letter, to give you some idea of what is in place and what will happen if, and when, you choose to return to worship at The Higherland.

All of the following are in place in order to keep others and ourselves safe and to abide by the current Government/Methodist Church guidelines:

Before coming to church - Current advice is that those over 70 or in a vulnerable category need to stay at home as much as possible. Those shielding currently, still need to shield as much as possible. Please do not come if you are feeling unwell in any way.

1. Those who receive/give lifts to get to worship – If the person who has usually given you a lift to church is willing to continue to do so at this time, they will get in touch with you. You will be encouraged to use a facemask in the car when you travel and possibly sit in a different seat to that which you have been used to.

2. Upon arrival at the Church you will be asked if you have any Covid-19 symptons, or have been asked to isolate. There is hand-gel available – please use it as you enter and follow the arrows and information displayed.

3. Use of the Lift (This has been professionally deep-cleaned and will continue to be so on a regular basis) Only one person, or those in a social bubble, may use the lift at any one time.

4. Track and Trace: If you are attending worship you are thereby giving permission for your details (name and telephone number) to be kept as a record of your attendance in case we are contacted by Track and Trace.

5. Unfortunately there must be no physical contact – apart from an elbow-nudge, no hugs, kisses or handshakes – as mentioned above, this is to protect ourselves and others from unwittingly spreading the virus.

6. Facemasks are now mandatory unless you are exempt, and will be available: please bring your own if possible.

7. Seating There will be signs on the pews indicating where it is safe to sit. This has been determined in order to ensure a 2m space between people on all sides. If there are others attending worship who are in your ‘social bubble’ you may sit with them. This may mean you sitting in different places to that which is usual for you.

Church Service – The service will be 30-40 minutes in length.

Currently no congregational singing is permitted, whether or not face masks are being worn, but we will still have worship and music!

1. The service will begin at 10am with the Minister/Local Preacher offering a prayer and handing over to the Worship leader who will sing a song, this will be followed by a welcome from the Steward who will hand back to the Minister/Local preacher.

2. The projector will be used for hymns and aspects of shared worship. Bibles and Hymn books can be requested and used in the service but will need to be quarantined for 48 hours and should be left on the table, at the back of the church where indicated, at the end of the service. If you would like to bring your own Hymn book or/and Bible please do so, but also take it home with you after the service. The Organist will play for a hymn during the worship and a piece of music at the end of the service. Please don’t talk as this is being played as this will increase the possibility of spreading the virus.

3. The collection plate will be available by the door for your offerings either as you arrive or as you leave. If you have been putting your offerings aside during Lock-down please do bring them with you. If you would like to give your collection by Standing Order please speak to Mick who will be happy to help..

4. Young people are welcome to accompany their parents/carers but they will need to be supervised by them.

5. There will be no refreshments after the service.

6. Please always keep in mind the need for ‘Social Distancing’ at 2 metres at all times.

Size of Gathering

7. The Church has been measured and is able to provide seating for 30 worshippers keeping social distance. Therefore the services for 2 and 9 August are only for those regular attenders at Higherland Methodist Church. When we have been able to evaluate the safe re-opening consideration will be given to a booking system for others to attend as we move forward.

NB The evaluation period has now been completed, and we are certain that the measures we have put in place will ensure the safety of our congregation. Anyone who is not already part of our worshipping community is welcome to worship with us, but please let us know in advance : antleech@hotmail.co.uk or 07534408446

At the end of the service

1. When the blessing has been given and the music played, people will be invited to leave pew by pew to ensure social distancing is kept.

After the service

2. Deep cleaning will need to be done following each worship service and volunteers will be sought to be added to a rota.

Flowers

There will be no fresh flower display. This has been decided in order to avoid the need for people to visit the premises prior to Sunday, to limit the use of the kitchen and to avoid the need for flowers to be distributed after the service. Contributions towards flowers will continue to be welcome and will be used for the Flower Festival being planned for 2021 to mark the Higherland bi-centenary Celebrations.

My apologies that this is rather a long letter, but it is very important that we all continue to be aware of the dangers of Covid-19 and do all we can to avoid spreading it. If you have any queries about the content of this letter or issues surrounding it please do not hesitate to get in touch with me tel. 631918.

The Circuit service material will continue to be available for those unable to attend worship (and will be emailed or posted to you - the video can be found on our Services Details page) in order that you can continue to share with the Higherland fellowship as you are able.

To those of you who are hoping to return to Worship I look forward to seeing you on 2 August or thereafter.

Every blessing, Rev. Christine