Why have a drive-in service?
In September 2020 we started a Circuit-wide Drive-In Service at Davenport Methodist Church, using the church's carpark field. The format has grown from strength to strength. To begin with the service took place every week, but from July 2021, as most people started to come back to church in the normal way, it changed to the 2nd Sunday of the month. The service provides opportunities for people who are shielding to attend a ‘live’ act of worship in a safe way.
So what actually happens in the service?
When people arrive in their cars, they are welcomed at the gate and an order of service is passed through the window with a litter-picker! The stewards all wear PPE to make the service as COVID-secure as possible. The steward will show you to a space suitable for the height of your car. Cars are parked a minimum of 1.5 metres away from one another. Car windows are allowed to be open, but only 5cm (2in). The size of this gap is shown diagrammatically each week on the order of service.
The preacher (Usually Rev. Nic) uses an amplification system (although many people suggest she is loud enough already!) We share together prayers, a bible reading, a sermon and usually three hymns. The words of the hymns are printed on the order of service. As we are inside our cars, we are allowed to sing! We close the service with the words of the grace as we look to the people in the cars either side of our own.
Do you offer Holy Communion?
On occasion, we are able to offer Holy Communion in a COVID-secure way by including pre-sealed Communion elements in a paper bag which is distributed on arrival at the gate by the steward on duty.
Is there a charge to attend this service?
There isn’t a charge to attend this service but there is an opportunity to make a donation. If you would like to make a donation to your own church within our Circuit, you can hand a labelled envelope to one of the stewards who has a litter-picker! Any loose cash will be given to the Circuit for the ongoing costs of the service.
Why did I have to book a place in the initial months?
Although booking a place for anything can be frustrating, it was important that people pre-booked if possible, to ensure there was enough space for everybody at the service. There is a limited capacity in the carpark. If the numbers wanting to attend are greater than the capacity we will look at offering a second service. We don’t want to have to turn people away.
We hope that you will come and join us. For details of what to do, see the notice on the Circuit Noticeboard.
“Come as you are but stay in your car.”
[See the Photo Gallery for more pictures]