Changes to worship due to Covid-19

Last updated on 20th December 2021

COVID information to those who attended Nine Lessons and Carols on Wednesday, 15th December 2021

Dear all,

We have learned that some persons, who were present at the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols in Helsinki Cathedral on Wednesday, 15th December 2021 at 19:00, have since developed symptoms received a positive test result for COVID-19. We have not received any official notice from health authorities that people who were present at the Cathedral would have been exposed.

All those attending the service were asked to show COVID-passes. A strong recommendation was made to wear masks. Choir members were asked to show COVID-passes before attending rehearsals. These arrangements were done in accordance with guidelines in place at that time.

If you develop symptoms please consult your health service provider for further advice. A helpful place to start is Coronavirus Symptom Checker ( through which you can also book an appointment for test.

The official contact tracing is done by the Helsinki Contact Tracing (Koronajäljitys) who will make decision about quarantines and other measures. If you receive a phone call from unknown number, please answer as this might be from Contact Tracing. Contact Tracing will also inform the church officials, if needed.

We are aware of the situation and monitor it closely. However we can not reveal any personal information and must wait for possible instructions from health authorities.

The Revd Tuomas Mäkipää
Area Dean for Finland

Please take into consideration the following COVID guidelines when coming to worship at St Nicholas

Before entering the Church, please use the hand disinfectant provided or wash your hands in the bathrooms.

All those joining in worship (clergy and laity) should wear a face mask to reduce transfer of respiratory droplets into the environment. Those who have a formal part in the liturgy (presiding, preaching, reading, interceding) may remove their face mask when they are actually speaking. Please be careful where masks are placed to avoid cross-contamination. Face masks are available at the entrance.

The Vergers are here to ensure your safety and those of other members of the congregation by overseeing the seating arrangements and providing guidance during the service. They will ask you for your phone number to add to our register as you arrive, this is for purely for contact tracing and after three weeks the register will be destroyed.

Seating arrangements in the Church have been planned to ensure a two-metre distance is maintained between people. If you are here with your family or individuals who live with you in the same household, you are welcome to sit together.

Should you feel the need to cough or sneeze, please use a tissue. Used tissues can be disposed of in the bin at the entrance. It is recommended that each individual or each family carry a small bottle of hand sanitizer.

At the Peace, please maintain a safe distance from other members of the congregation. The sign itself can take the form of a wave or smile instead of shaking hands.

Holy Communion will be administered in the form of the wafer only. The wafer will be administered by the Chaplain and you will be guided at this point in the service by the Vergers. If you wish to receive Holy Communion then please extend your hands, with face covering in place. You may lower or unloop your face mask to consume the consecrated bread and then replace the face mask before moving back to your place in the congregation.

The Vergers will ensure that safe distancing is maintained when leaving the Church, please wait for their signal that it is safe to leave.

Contactless giving is available at the entrance/exit.  Offerings can also be placed in a basket at the exit when leaving the service.

Please note that there is no post service gathering for tea and fellowship in the Crypt.

Online Sunday School finishes on 30th May and resumes in early August. At this point we are not permitted to hold Sunday School in the crypt.

Those with symptoms of Covid-19 or other respiratory or flu-like illness, or an elevated temperature, or who are particularly vulnerable to infection should not attend public services, but join worship, as available, online.