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The leader of the Irish Catholic Church is looking for an urgent meeting with the Irish government over what he calls for a”draconian” ban on people Mass..
Archbishop Eamon Martin accused the government of behaving in a”covert manner without consultation or notice”.
Irish Health Minister Stephen Donnelly signed a regulation last week allowing only virtual religious services as a result of pandemic.
The archbishops said that they considered his action”a violation of trust”.
They’re seeking legal guidance.
In a statement, Archbishop Martin said he only became aware on Friday that a statutory instrument was printed a week about the matter.
image captionA priest celebrating a online Mass in an empty church during the first lockdown last year
He predicted the move both”provocative” and”draconian”, adding the legislation was”unnecessary and confusing”.
“The exact provisions are uncertain and initially reading appear to be draconian, moving farther than the restrictions we’ve been cooperating with throughout the pandemic to date,” he explained.
“We shall be seeking legal counsel to advise several questions regarding the extent of the statutory instrument.”
Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister) Micheál Martin fulfilled Irish bishops, including Archbishop Martin, on Thursday, 15 April.
Archbishop Martin said it was highly unsatisfactory that despite the reassurances since the taoiseach knew the value of worship to the people of Ireland, this statutory instrument was released”at a covert manner and without notice or consultation”.
The Irish health minister has defended the current limitations on Mass, saying there is a ban on all big indoor parties due to the risks posed by Covid-19.
Irish broadcaster RTÉ has noted Mr Donnelly said that he had been aware it was a significant imposition for a great deal of people and as soon as public health advice deemed it safe, public Mass could be allowed.
He also said he would be happy to meet the bishops.
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