29 Jul 2020

Diocese leads Church of England weekly online service


Christians in the UK joined in worship with their brothers and sisters across Europe and beyond as the Church of England’s weekly online service was led by the Diocese in Europe on 26 July.

The service for the Seventh Sunday after Trinity was broadcast on YouTube, Facebook, and the Church of England’s website.  It centred around a message that separation and isolation - even after months of lockdown and distancing measures - can be overcome through God.  Here is the YouTube link to the Diocese in Europe service. 

Bishop Robert introduced the service, talking about the historical and contemporary life and work of the Diocese in Europe, and how we serve over 300 congregations across 150 chaplaincies in continental Europe, Russia, Turkey and Morocco.

Filmed at the The Pro-Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, Brussels service worship was led by The Revd Fiona Simon, Associate Chaplain.   The Order of Service is at this link.  

The Ven. Dr Paul Vrolijk, Archdeacon of North West Europe and Senior Chaplain at Holy Trinity Brussels preached.  In his sermon, Archdeacon Paul spoke about the experience of people separated from family and friends for months during the current pandemic. 

Preaching from the final section of Romans 8, which says that nothing can separate us from the love of God, he said: “I hope that at this moment you may feel connected to the God who loves you as we together listen to God’s word, as we pray and worship together, as we hear the Eucharistic prayer and join spiritual communion.

“That the Holy Spirit may give you that encouragement and assurance; whether we face illness, or lock-down or isolation or job loss or uncertainty we may know that suffering will not conquer hope; that death will not conquer life; separation is never final.”

Prayers were led by Ozichi Baron, a licensed lay reader, and the readings were given by the churchwarden Nicholas Deliyanakis and Jaddua Solomon Abraham.

Gayl Russell, who runs Holy Trinity's community kitchen, spoke about the work of the project which now feeds up to 500 people a week including refugees and homeless people in Brussels.

National Church Digital Communications team have told us this week that, across Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, there have been 19,000 views of our service so far of some length, and that the service trailer has been seen 85,000 times across social media platforms.

Bishop Robert said:

“I am delighted our Diocese was given this opportunity to record a Church of England weekly online service, which has enabled us communicate the diversity of who we are, and what do, reaching a truly global audience online.  I am very grateful to friends at Holy Trinity for all their hard work and contributions to making this project a great success.”