The Archbishops and Bishops of the Church of England have urged everyone 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 this evening, 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.”
Our dedicated Coronavirus page on the diocesean website has an archive of key announcements, statements, pastoral notes and changes to diocesan policy. You can also sign up to our new Coronavirus Briefing to receive important updates from the Diocese of Chester.