The leader of the Irish Catholic Church is looking for an urgent meeting with the Irish authorities on what he calls a”draconian” ban on public Mass..
Archbishop Eamon Martin accused the government of behaving in a”clandestine manner without consultation or notice”.
Irish Health Minister Stephen Donnelly signed a law a week allowing only virtual religious services due to the pandemic.
The archbishops said that they believed his action”a breach of trust”.
They are looking for legal advice.
In a statement, Archbishop Martin said he just became aware of Friday a statutory instrument was published last week about the topic.
image captionA priest celebrating an online Mass in an empty church during the first lockdown last year
He predicted the movement both”provocative” and”draconian”, adding the law was”confusing and unnecessary”.
“The exact provisions are unclear and initially reading appear to be draconian, going further than the constraints we’ve been cooperating with during the pandemic to date,” he explained.
“We will be looking for legal counsel to counsel several questions regarding the degree of the legal instrument”
Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister) Micheál Martin met Irish bishops, including Archbishop Martin, on Thursday, 15 April.
Archbishop Martin stated it was highly disappointing that despite the reassurances since the taoiseach understood the value of worship to the people of Ireland, this statutory instrument was released”into a covert fashion and without consultation or notice”.
The Irish health ministry has defended the current restrictions on Mass, stating there’s a ban on all big indoor parties because of the risks posed by Covid-19.
Irish broadcaster RTÉ has reported that Mr Donnelly said that he was aware that it was a critical imposition for a whole lot of individuals and whenever public health information deemed it safe, people Mass would be allowed.
He also stated he’d be delighted to satisfy the bishops.
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