This email communication has been sent to all licensed Active Clergy, clergy who hold the bishop's Permission to Officiate, Retired Clergy, Readers, Authorised Lay Ministers, Churchwardens, Lay Chairs, PCC Secretaries, and the members of the Bishop’s Council of Diocesan Trustees.

Dear colleagues 

We write to you today to outline our current thinking in regards to Holy Week with the hope it may assist in your planning. These plans we hope will be finalised tomorrow. 

Holy Week, from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday, is an invitation for us to enter into the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This Holy Week occurs at a time of great change in our lives, the country and the world. The end of that change is unknown in many ways. We would like to invite you to enter into the events of Holy Week as local parishes and benefices as well as the diocese and as part of the national church. With church buildings closed, Holy Week will be lived out in different ways this year. This difference should not nullify the emptiness of 'Holy Saturday' or the joy we are granted in the resurrection in which we have our identity in this time of crisis, but it will be disorientating for us all.

Across the diocese during Holy Week we are currently exploring the following:

  • a brief daily video message from different members of the bishops' staff beginning on Palm Sunday 
  • an invitation to make palm crosses out of paper/card and place in windows from Palm Sunday, or use larger branches to indicate your house has entered the story of Holy Week
  • a simple service on Tuesday for the renewal of ministerial commitment for all God’s people which we are hoping will be live online at 11am 
  • a Eucharist online at 5pm on Easter Sunday evening
  • an invitation to light a candle in a window each evening from Easter Day as a sign of new life 

There are various national initiatives on social media including the daily offices. Archbishop Justin will publish reflections through the week and will pray the Exultet on Holy Saturday with reflections about 'waiting in hope'. On Easter Sunday he will broadcast a service with the Bishop of Dover.

Please note that Holy Week gatherings, whether indoors or outdoors, cannot take place, and the distribution of palm crosses is not advised under the current public health regime.

Our hope is to complement, and not detract from, the initiatives you yourselves will be planning locally, while at the same connecting with those from the wider diocese who would traditionally join with us at this time of year.

More details tomorrow! 

With our thanks and prayers,

 

Bishop David
The Right Reverend Dr David Court
Bishop of Grimsby
Acting Bishop of Lincoln

and

Bishop Nicholas
The Right Reverend Dr Nicholas Chamberlain
Bishop of Grantham