public worship could resume from December 1

The day after a weekend when some Catholics gathered in front of the forecourt of churches in several cities in France to demand the lifting of the suspension of masses, public worship may resume from the 1is December, if the epidemiological situation allows it and on condition of respecting a strict health protocol, according to corroborating sources, after a videoconference of religious leaders with the Prime Minister, Jean Castex.

“The Prime Minister said he was ready to consider regime easing (current) from 1is December subject to “ adopt by then a “Strict sanitary protocol” in places of worship and “Subject to the epidemiological situation improving”, declared, Monday November 16, Eric de Moulins-Beaufort, president of the Conference of the bishops of France (CEF).

“In order to outline prospects, which will be based on improving sanitary conditions, the Prime Minister and the Minister of the Interior recalled the horizon set around the 1is next December by the President of the Republic ”, confirmed Matignon in a press release. “They insisted on the need to work as of now on the adaptation of the rules which will allow the resumption of the exercise of the cults, as soon as the sanitary conditions allow it”, adds Matignon.

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also Catholics demand the return of mass in public

New protocol

Gérald Darmanin must propose a new protocol “Within eight to ten days”, said the president of the Protestant Federation of France, François Clavairoly.

Developed with the cults, “These proposals will be submitted to the Prime Minister next week”, said Matignon. “The Minister of the Interior will give us details on the recovery procedures: the number of square meters around a faithful, the gauge, but also the possibility of living activities other than the celebration of worship, such as meetings churches, parish councils, catechesis ”, said Mr. Clavairoly.

Mr. de Moulins-Beaufort pleaded for the occupation of a church to be around “A third of the space” or from « 4 m2 » around a devotee. “We can give up songs”, he also said.

Since the re-containment in early November, places of worship can remain open, but ceremonies with the public are prohibited, except for funeral ceremonies up to a limit of 30 people, a measure that was confirmed on November 7 by the Council of State, seized by several Catholic associations but also the CEF, which protested against this religious restriction.

These rules “Remain in force”, recalled Matignon in his press release, arguing “The health imperative”. Scheduled by the Elysee Palace at the time of the reconfinement, this meeting comes after Catholics demanded, Saturday and Sunday, the right to participate physically in the celebration of the Eucharist “By respecting these sanitary measures, the Church [catholique] participates in the national effort to fight the epidemic “, estimated the CEF. The meeting brought together all those responsible for worship: Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Jewish, Muslim and Buddhist.

The World with AFP

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