It’s no exaggeration to say that all our lives have been dominated by Covid since March 2020. It has certainly overshadowed my first two years almost as Bishop. I was only able to enjoy a very short window of normality before events took their course and everything changed.
In that almost year and a half since, I have looked on with admiration and a true sense of pride at the way our diocese has responded to a challenge unprecedented in our lifetimes. I want to place on the record my deep and heartfelt appreciation to those of you, right across the diocese, who made sure that both the worship of God and the ministry of the church were able to continue in the most harrowing of circumstances.
In next to no time, many of our clergy familiarised themselves with previously alien platforms like Facebook Live and YouTube, using them to provide online services. Parishioners supported food banks. Parishes provided meals for the elderly housebound. Church members supported the lonely through regular phone calls, collecting medicines and delivering shopping. Sunday schools moved online and ‘home packs’ were provided for children. People showed their Blitz spirit. They rallied round.
The enforced and, indeed, unwelcome changes that the pandemic demanded of us nevertheless showed us that we are far more capable, far more adaptable and far more creative than we ever could have believed.
We are very grateful to Bishop-elect of Diocese of Derry and Raphoe, the Ven Andrew Forster, for taking time to chat to the Gazette just days after his election. Read the full interview in this month's issue. https://t.co/Zy6iCRrQ87 pic.twitter.com/0nzoPGAjKP
— CofI Gazette (@CofIgazette) September 11, 2019