The chief of the Irish Catholic Church is looking for an urgent meeting with the Irish authorities over what he calls for a“draconian“ ban on public Mass..
Archbishop Eamon Martin accused the authorities of behaving in a“clandestine manner without consultation or notice“.
Irish Health Minister Stephen Donnelly signed a law last week allowing just virtual religious services as a result of pandemic.
The archbishops said that they believed his actions“a breach of trust“.
They are looking for legal information.
In a statement, Archbishop Martin said he only became aware of Friday a statutory instrument was released last week on the topic.
image captionA priest celebrating an internet Mass in an empty church during the initial lockdown last year
He predicted the move both“provocative“ and“draconian“, adding the legislation was“confusing and unnecessary“.
„The precise provisions are unclear and at first reading seem to be draconian, moving farther than the constraints we’ve been cooperating with throughout the pandemic so far,“ he explained.
„We will be seeking legal counsel to advise on several questions concerning 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 clandestine manner and without consultation or notice“.
The Irish health minister has defended the recent limitations on Mass, saying there is a ban on all big indoor gatherings because of the risks posed by Covid-19.
Irish broadcaster RTÉ has noted Mr Donnelly said that he was aware that it was a serious imposition for a lot of individuals and as soon as public health information deemed it secure, public Mass would be allowed.
In addition, he said he would be happy to satisfy the bishops.
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