Covid-19 Level 3 Restrictions Announced for Churches Nationwide
6th October 2020
A Statement from Nick Park, Executive Director of Evangelical Alliance Ireland.
Following last night’s announcement by the Taoiseach, as of midnight tonight (Tuesday, 6th October) Ireland moves to Level 3 of the Living with Covid Plan.
The practical effects of this are that, as from midnight tonight (Tuesday 6th October 2020):
- Churches will not be permitted to hold in-person services or indoor events.
- Churches are requested to move to online services instead. These online services may be filmed in church buildings, and church buildings are also permitted to remain open for individuals to engage in private prayer.
- Outdoor events are permitted for a maximum number of 15 people. Given the time of year and the Irish weather, outdoor events for even that small number will probably be impractical – particularly since marquees or gazebos are classed as ‘indoors’ for the purposes of the emergency legislation.
- Church ministers are fully entitled to continue to fulfil their pastoral and administrative work, which is an essential service
- The maximum number permitted at weddings or funerals will be 25 people.
- These restrictions are expected to last for 3 weeks.
EAI is unaware of any infections occurring in church services since the lockdown ended at the end of June 2020, so these new restrictions are disappointing. A lot of churches have worked very hard to comply with safety guidelines, and so for those who have been behaving responsibly this represents an undeserved setback.
Let’s continue to share Jesus in every way possible, and to observe all necessary public health measures. We all know what needs to be done to mitigate the spread of this virus, and we all have a part to play. We pray that the next few weeks will see a reduction in Covid cases, hospitalisations and deaths.