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Funerals at St. John’s, Toorak, during the COVID-19 pandemic church closure period

UPDATE as at 31 December, 2020

Churches may now hold funerals with a maximum of a density quotient of 1 person per 2 sq m. The density quotient for St. John’s is 170, which is the current maximum number of people who may attend a funeral. Social distancing is still in place (1.5m distancing between individuals unless from a family unit) and masks must be worn inside the church. Please ensure that you sign in using the QR code (this is preferred) or on the paper register if you do not have a smartphone.

When a loved one dies, we want to provide them with the best possible occasion to say farewell and entrust them to God’s care. During the last stages of restrictions, please note the following:

  1. St. John’s clergy are available to conduct funerals at St. John’s church, at a funeral chapel, or at the graveside.
  2. In the case of funerals held at St. John’s, a maximum of 170 people indoors may attend, Family members who live together may sit together but social distancing for others is required. In the case of funerals held off-site, all should abide by the social distancing guidelines in place at the local venue.
  3. On arrival at St. John’s, all who attend the funeral must give their name and contact details to the funeral director or St. John’s Covid-Safe Officer. Please also scan the QR code to register your attendance before entering the church. Hand sanitiser must be used.
  4. Clergy can now meet with families in person to organise funerals.
  5. A requiem Eucharist is possible but the Eucharist is in one kind (bread only).
  6. It is possible to arrange for organ music at the service and possibly a small choir or soloist.
  7. You may privately arrange casket flowers and flowers for flower stands. Flowers for stands need to be brought in a vase which must then be removed by the person organising the funeral.
  8. Memorial services with no body present can also be accommodated for those who have recently died. In such cases a funeral director should be present to assist the clergy and family.

To organise a funeral at St. John’s during this period, please speak first to a funeral director, and then contact the church on 9826 1765.

The Rev. Dr. Peter French