Covid19 Updates – August 2020Saturday 8th August 2020
The Covid-19 pandemic is a situation which is continuing to evolve and develop.
On 31 July increased lockdown restrictions were placed on Greater Manchester and East Lancashire which covers a large part of our diocese.
At present, the guidance remains that you may attend a place or worship, where Covid-19 secure guidance is implemented, but you must continue to socially distance from people outside of your household.
Churches across our diocese are gradually beginning to reopen for both private prayer and the celebration of Mass, though there are limits on capacity in line with social distancing guidelines. To find out whether your parish is open please contact your parish office directly. Parish contact details can be found in our directory.
Bishop John’s Response to Localised Lockdown
In response to the localised lockdown, Bishop John said:
“The renewed restrictions give us a clear reminder of the seriousness of the on-going pandemic.
“The government guidance allows places of worship to stay open where Covid-19 Secure guidance applies, but you must socially distance from people outside of your household. This means remaining 2 metres apart from people outside your household. These measures are already in place across our diocese and will continue to follow all the safety requirements. We may however need to respond to local situations as they arise, and I support parish priests in their individual decisions on whether they consider it safe for Mass to take place in their parish.
“I urge all those affected by the new restrictions to take the measures seriously. As Christians we have a responsibility to care for the safety of not only ourselves but our brothers and sisters.”
Update on Face Coverings
From 8th August the Government has announced that face-coverings will be mandatory in indoor settings where people are likely to come into contact with people they do not know. This now includes churches.
Those that are exempt for medical reasons or children under 11 remain exempt in these settings
Face-coverings can be removed by readers as they read the scriptures. The Priest and, if used, Eucharistic Ministers need only wear a face-covering when off the sanctuary and distributing Communion, which must be in the hand.
The experience of Mass and visiting a Church will feel different due to some of the safety features which have been put into place. You can find out more in the infographic below.
If you are looking for online resources and the Lord’s Day at Home sheet, you can continue to find resources on our Stay at Home, Pray at Home list by clicking here.
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