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Dear Friends,

Loving greetings to everyone!

There will be no face-to-face meeting for worship at Cotteridge this Sunday or until further notice.

Elders and Overseers have been thinking about how to keep some things going, and this is what we can say at this point – sorry it’s rather long!

This Sunday, March 22nd:

Some people may want to hold their own quiet time at home from 10.30, in the knowledge that other Friends will be doing the same.

There will be an online meeting for worship at the usual time using Zoom. It is possible to join in with this by phone as well as using a tablet or computer.  See below for instructions.

Mark Russ will be leading online Bible study, also using Zoom.  Everyone’s welcome to join in, even if you haven’t been to the previous ones.  Make your own breakfast and sit down in front of your phone, tablet or computer to join others between 8.45 and 9.15 for a chat over your toast and coffee  (other beverages are available!). This will also give a buffer to make sure the technology is working ok.  The reading and reflection will begin at 9.15 and last about an hour. The passage will be Romans, chapter 12, Paul’s advice on faithful community.

There will be an online children’s meeting at 4pm. Details are being sent direct to parents/carers.

Woodbrooke/Friends World Committee for Consultation also offer public online meetings for worship at various times (go to https://www.woodbrooke.org.uk/about/online-mfw/Online-worship-advice) and a number of other initiatives are springing up which you could search for.

How to use Zoom:

 Chris Martin has created an instruction sheet which is here.

There are some helpful video tutorials on the zoom website:
https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/206618765-Zoom-Video-Tutorials?_ga=2.118323338.2058475994.1584618282-1102437937.1575457753

There is also general information about online meetings provided by Woodbrooke at
https://www.woodbrooke.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/A-Quakers-guide-to-online-worship-and-meetings-19-03-2020.pdf

Hilary Topp has also offered more personal coaching.  This will be on Friday 20th at 7.30pm, for about 20 minutes  To join her, go to https://zoom.us/j/403176693 and follow instructions!  If you get stuck you can phone Hilary on 0121 459 4605.

To join the Bible study go to https://zoom.us/j/2493359588  any time between 8.45 and 9.15am.

If you then want to stay for meeting for worship you will be able to stay online.

To join meeting for worship, go to https://zoom.us/j/2493359588 between 10.25 and 10.30am.  Please try to observe the start of worship as you would normally!  Children might want to join us as usual to begin with, and families will need to judge their own timing for ‘leaving the room’.

If you have a camera on your computer your face will be visible for others in see in a small window.  You will be seeing everyone else in other windows. Please mute your microphone unless you want to speak.

You can also join by phone (sharing sound only) by dialing one of these numbers: 023 481 5240, 0131 460 1196, 0203 051 2874 or 0203 481 5237.  When asked for the number of your meeting enter 2493359588.

This is all a bit experimental so please be patient with yourself and the system – they must be experiencing huge volumes of traffic on their site. We will review the experience afterwards and let you know if there are to be any changes for future weeks.

What about the future?

 Things are changing daily.   Elders and Overseers will be ‘meeting’ on Monday.  Hilary has already offered further virtual coffee mornings. We will keep you posted of other ideas as they develop – for example, we are thinking of telephone circles or WhatsApp groups for those who want; asking how to ensure the best possible practical and spiritual care when people may be unwell or feeling under pressure; wondering how we might hold further virtual meetings including the children; and so on. Meanwhile, if you have ideas yourself please let one of us know.

Each of us will be facing these unprecedented times in our own way.  It is challenging to us all to seek, find and live out answers to the question of what it means to be a Quaker community of faith when we can’t meet as we usually do. We send you love, support and encouragement, not only to be alongside others but also to seek whatever help you may need.  Please do get in touch with one of us if there is any way we can support you.

EldersOverseersClerks
Mike Eccles Roderick Keefe Tina Helfrich
Peter Fishpool Ted Raybould Heather Rowlands
Jo Hindley Jill Stow Leonora Wilson
Hilary Johnson Hilary Topp
Harriet Martin Richard Tuckett
Helen Rowlands
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