Church Holds Drive-in Service For The First Time

Church Holds Drive-in Service For The First Time

A church today hosted its first ever drive-in service, with a vicar leading the event from a car park.

Around 40 cars full of worshipers gathered outside a village hall to hear music and listen to the words of the minister.

Everyone in the vehicles put their driver side window down, so they could join in with the singing, but left the passenger window up to help with social distancing.

People put their hands through the sunroof of their cars and clapped along while reading from hymn sheets provided by the church.

Reverend Claire Towns, of St Barnabas Church, led the unique drive-in service, which began at 10am in Swanmore, Hampshire, along with lay minister Sally Beazley, 55.

The 51-year-old reverend said: ‘We decided that we wanted to offer people the chance to sing, as that is an important part of Christian worship.

‘We thought we would offer a drive-in service that revolved around singing – as well as our first act of public worship in the church itself.

‘For people in the village, it’s another sign that the church is at the heart of this community.’

St Barnabas Church has been offering live-streamed worship services during the lockdown, and has opened the church to villagers and others so they can pray privately at various times over the past two weeks.

Musician Peter Fellows led the singing from a keyboard, and the Rev Claire Towns led the service using microphones and a PA system.

Worshippers were asked to sing within their cars with members of their own household.

Because today is also the first Sunday on which the government is allowing public worship to happen in church buildings, there was also a simple, traditional Communion service at 8am that morning inside the church itself.

However, due to limited space the church was only able to allow 15 households into the building, hence the need for the drive in service held later on.

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