This evening the Bishops of Southwark, London, Rochester and Chelmsford have issued a joint statement that the time has regrettably come in London, not only to suspend public worship, but also for church buildings to be closed entirely
There have been strong calls from the Prime Minister and Mayor of London for us not to leave home unless it is essential, and not to use public transport unless we have to. If our attempts to distance ourselves physically from one another and prevent the spread of infection are not effective, more people will die. In taking this unprecedented step the bishops are demonstrating how important physical distancing is in saving lives.
After three days of successfully live streaming Cathedral services we very much hope that this will be able to continue. We are keen to find ways to help the Cathedral community feel less isolated and part of a greater company. Sadly our doors must now be left closed even for private prayer and meditation.
We are all greatly saddened by this now necessary action. It is born of the teaching of Our Lord that the two great commandments are love of God and love of neighbour. The very love of neighbour that leads us to want to come together requires us to sacrifice congregating for a season.
Even though our buildings will be closed, the Church continues to be alive and active. Morning and Evening Prayer and the Eucharist will continue to be offered by the clergy of Southwark Cathedral. Please keep watching for updates on this website where over the coming days and weeks we will be posting materials and links to enable you to continue your life of prayer, biblical reflection and devotion. We will be praying for you each day and we ask that you continue to pray for us.
Whatever happens, we believe in a God who makes all things new and has promised to be with us for ever.
Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.
St Teresa of Avila