(The Guardian) It sounds like the build-up to an illegal rave. Invitations are passed by word of mouth to trusted people. Minimal information – time, directions – is quietly given with pleas for discretion. Once everyone is assembled in a barn on a remote farm – “away from prying eyes,” says the organizer – it begins.
This is no rave, but an English church service under lockdown, and the organizer is a Protestant pastor. The Christians who will gather illegally in the west of England on Sunday morning – as they have for the past two Sundays – will pray, read from the scriptures, sing hymns and listen to a sermon.
“We’ve been holding clandestine services since this lockdown began,” the pastor told the Observer, speaking on condition of anonymity. “It feels weird for us to act this way. People have said it feels more like an underground church in China.
“The fact that we have to sneak around to worship God, in fear of criminal prosecution, is alarming. But we do what we have to do.”
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Editor’s Note. This article was written by Harriet Sherwood and published at the Guardian
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