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Church News

Churches unite to combat flooding

by Tola Mbakwe

Flooding that caused some churches in Gloucestershire to temporarily close, did not stop congregations from worshipping on Sunday. 

People from Tirley and Ashleworth were invited by the Church of St Mary in Hasfield to join them for Sunday worship.

Rev John Longuet-Higgins, who is the rector in charge of eight parishes that make up West of Severn Churches, told Premier’s News Hour it was a "lovely" service.

"It's quite lovely to have the two churches together. It was very special and [we had] prayers for people in the community affected by the floods."

Rev Longuet-Higgins said locals are used to flooding but it's the increased frequency of it that's been a challenge for them.

"Today we've been in Ashworth Church and we've been washing it out, but we know it might be a bit full on task because we might be back there again, because there's a lot of rain in Wales and River Severn rises in Wales.

"It could be dry here, but if it's raining hard in in North Wales, then we're going to get their water eventually. It usually takes about two days before it affects us. So, even though we're cleaning out churches we might have to do it again."

He said Storm Dennis flooding has caused knee-high flooding in churches and a muddy aftermath.

"The River Seven comes from sort of reddish bits of the world and it’s reddish mud. When the water goes down it leaves a crust on the floor and on anything else that's affected, and you have to power spray it off."

The rector said people have been supporting by providing food and offering their homes for people who have had to leave theirs.

He asked people to pray for resilience and safety during this time.


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