A campaign to overturn the ban on singing in churches across the country has been launched today by Premier Christian Communications.
Organisers of Sign to Sing, are calling on the Government to overturn the frustrating rule which forbids praise in the form of vocal musical expression through song. Under the current Covid-19 restrictions, members of congregations are not allowed to sing hymns or songs of worship inside church buildings in England. Music can only be played on a PA system or performed by socially distanced choirs and musicians.
Churches across the country have complied with all of the restrictions imposed throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and taken all necessary precautions as they have tentatively reopened their doors to worshipers again. However, as lockdown has eased and we have seen singing being permitted for football fans at Wembley or even in small pubs across the country, the ban remains in place for church goers.
In Wales, churches have been permitted to sing inside buildings.
Peter Kerridge, CEO of Premier Christian Communications said: “It’s ironic that hymns we listen to at church often exhort us to sing our praises to God, but we can only sit in silence because of the latest government guidelines. It’s frustrating because singing in communion with others is a form of prayer and a much valued part of the church service.
“We were right to be cautious about singing in front of others because we couldn’t be fully sure of the risks. But now we know more about the science and we know that singing poses no more risk than talking, especially when you consider that when we sing we do so mainly in the same direction, but when we talk we are often facing each other.
“The Government is preparing to lift most of the remaining restrictions on July 19th. This is due in large part to the NHS’s hugely successful vaccination programme. For many social and cultural activities, like big sport events and festivals, we will see some level of normality return. However, we can’t be sure yet that congregational singing will be allowed. So, while it could be fine for football fans to return to their terrace chants at Wembley – or even in small pubs around the country, we could still be banned from singing our favourite hymns in our own congregations. That can’t be right, can it?
“We are calling for regulations to treat Christian church-goers fairly and equally and for singing to be brought back into churches across the whole of the UK on 19th July at the very latest. Sign our petition, and donate money to our cause if you can, to help us make the case to Government on this pressing issue.”
The Evangelical Alliance has described the ban on singing in church as “nonsensical”. The Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Rev Nick Baines described the measures as “inconsistent” while speaking in the House of Lords while the Bishop of London, the Rt Rev Dame Sarah Mullaly has said she would continue to press for an “ongoing appraisal of choral and congregational signing”.
PCC is now asking for as many people as possible to respond to the Sign to Sign petition.
To sign the petition visit: premier.org.uk/sing