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Church leaders plead directly to Ministers to reopen places of worship for Christmas services

Nov 22, 2020
Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove and Robert Jenrick, the Communities Secretary, have been handed a Faith Task Force dossier detailing the efforts made to render places of worship safe.
Church leaders plead directly to Ministers to reopen places of worship for Christmas services

Church leaders plead directly to Ministers to reopen 'Covid-secure' places of worship for Christmas services

Michael Gove and Robert Jenrick have been handed Faith Task Force dossierIt details efforts made to render places of worship safe - and comes as Tory MPs are poised to step up pressure for churches to reopen w safety allowsAdvent Sunday is  just a week away; religious leaders want go-ahead for carol services, Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and Communion on Christmas Day

By Anna Mikhailova For The Mail On Sunday

Published: 20:38 EST, 21 November 2020 | Updated: 20:49 EST, 21 November 2020

Ministers are facing a direct appeal from church leaders to reopen places of worship for Christmas services amid claims they are 'Covid-secure'.

Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove and Robert Jenrick, the Communities Secretary, have been handed a Faith Task Force dossier detailing the efforts made to render places of worship safe.

It comes as Tory MPs are poised to step up pressure for churches to reopen w safety allows.

The church leaders' report comes with Advent Sunday just a week away and amid fears time is running out to get the go-ahead for the most popular services of the year, including carol services, Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and Communion on Christmas Day. 

Ministers are facing a direct appeal from church leaders to reopen places of worship for Christmas services amid claims they are 'Covid-secure'. Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove and Robert Jenrick, the Communities Secretary, have been handed a Faith Task Force dossier detailing the efforts made to render places of worship safe

The report, prepared by public health advisers to the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church, stresses that places of worship have combined national guidelines with their own safety rules according to different religions' traditions.

The document, entitled Keeping Public Worship Safe For The Future, highlights how safety measures worked successfully in places of worship after they reopened following the first lockdown and before they closed for services again this month.

And it stressed that if churches do reopen this Christmas, congregation numbers will have social distancing restrictions. 

Churches are currently open for private prayer but all services are online.

The church leaders' report comes with Advent Sunday just a week away and amid fears time is running out to get the go-ahead for the most popular services of the year, including carol services, Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and Communion on Christmas Day. (Above, the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby earlier this month)

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