Since our last review meeting, we have been encouraged by the opportunities our workers have found in the open-air. Whilst not actively handing out literature (except from a board/table to those who have engaged with us), there have been numerous profitable conversations with those who show a real interest in the gospel message.
The overwhelming feedback we have received is that it is wise to proceed with a slow and measured easing of restrictions, where appropriate. We are grateful to the patience of our Staff Evangelists, Associate workers and supporters and their adherence to current measures.
Whilst we wish to facilitate open-air evangelism we must give due diligence to considering Government legislation and guidance. With increased fear in the community because of a rise in positive cases and more localised restrictions being imposed, it was felt that we could only ease current measures slightly.
Although the Committee continue to recommend in most locations a maximum of four (Evangelist/Associate worker plus three registered supporters), based upon feedback received from our workers, it is recognised that it may be beneficial to increase the size of a team to a maximum of six (i.e. Evangelist/Associate worker plus five registered
supporters) in certain towns/cities. However, each Evangelist/Associate worker must ensure that an open-air venue is suitable to have a larger presence on the street. Social distancing must not be contravened, between team members, passers-by and any queues for shops/branches. Local authorities and the Police can issue fines from
breaching social distancing laws and so our public conduct must not bring our testimony into question. It is for this reason that the Committee recommend in most locations a maximum of four is sufficient.
These changes will come into force on Saturday, 19th September.
Our workers and registered supporters, should only go out into the open-air if they are not displaying any COVID-19 symptoms and are fulfilling the criteria of our risk assessments and insurance responsibilities by adhering to our current guidance and procedures.
A further review meeting is scheduled for Monday, 19th October with representatives from the Staff Evangelists and Committee in attendance.
Despite the frustrations and restrictions, which are currently part-and-parcel of daily life, we rejoice that the gospel continues to go forth on the streets of our nation. We are able to proclaim the sinfulness of sin coupled with God’s love in the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ – Who is the key to life. May our conduct in a watching world commend the good news of Jesus and may many come to Him in repentance and faith!
16th September 2020