The leader of the Irish Catholic Church is seeking an urgent meeting with the Irish government on what he calls a”draconian” ban on people Mass..
Archbishop Eamon Martin accused the authorities of behaving in a”clandestine manner without notice or consultation”.
Irish Health Minister Stephen Donnelly signed a law a week allowing only virtual spiritual services due to the pandemic.
The archbishops said that they believed his action”a violation of confidence”.
They are seeking legal guidance.
In a statement, Archbishop Martin said he became aware on Friday a statutory instrument was printed a week on the situation.
image captionA priest celebrating a online Mass in a vacant church during the initial lockdown last year
He predicted the move both”provocative” and”draconian”, including the law was”unnecessary and confusing”.
“The exact provisions are uncertain and initially reading seem to be draconian, moving farther than the restrictions we have been cooperating with throughout the pandemic to date,” he explained.
“We shall be seeking legal counsel to advise several questions concerning the extent 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 unsatisfactory that despite the reassurances since the taoiseach recognized the value of worship to those of Ireland, this statutory instrument was introduced”at a clandestine fashion and without notice or consultation”.
The Irish health ministry has defended the current limitations on Mass, stating there’s a ban on all big indoor gatherings because of the dangers introduced by Covid-19.
Irish broadcaster RTÉ has reported that Mr Donnelly said he had been aware it was a serious imposition for a good deal of people and as soon as public health advice deemed it secure, public Mass could be permitted.
In addition, he stated he would be happy to fit the bishops.
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