Flip to God as an alternative of concern – Archbishop

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The Archbishop of Canterbury

Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, used his sermon for the Church of England's first national virtual service to encourage people to look outside of others' needs and to remember "that life goes on."

The service was filmed in the crypt chapel at Lambeth Palace and broadcast live on Sunday morning via the Archbishop's Facebook page and 39 local BBC radio stations.

It was the Church of England's first national online service since public worship in 16,000 churches was discontinued.

The show coincided with Mother’s Day in the UK when many people were unable to celebrate personally with their mothers due to social distance.

It also coincided with a nationwide day of prayer and action attended by all the major Christian denominations in Britain.

The archbishop thanked people for being involved "at this strange time in the life of our world" and found that this year's Mother Sunday was "strange" given the restrictions on movement.

He said the nation was "torn between our need to keep life going" and "the fear and the isolation we face" when he said it was a good time to go Pray.

"Perhaps this means that this is a good Sunday for us to call our churches and our nation to pray and act," he said.

He continued by asking people to turn to God and think about how they could personally or virtually take care of those around them.

"In difficult times, we have a choice to focus on fear, on ourselves, on what we can't do. Or we can turn to God and let God make us pray for the world and that To let prayer flow into creative action, "he said.

"There is a lot to celebrate in our churches," he said, adding that the unusual circumstances were an opportunity to "listen to God's caring love for us" and "turn to others."

Candles were lit during the service for mothers and anyone suffering from the coronavirus pandemic.

The archbishop said that the service "took place with the absolutely minimum number of employees and people required to carry it out".

In a word of encouragement to people who worship from home, he said, "Today we are separate in the room, but we still agree to worship together before the throne of God our Savior."

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