New Covid restrictions will not limit numbers at Mass

Scottish churches are to be exempt from imminent Covid restrictions on the numbers of people who can gather indoors, The Scottish Catholic has learned.

From Boxing Day, there will be a limit of 200 people for indoor seated events, however this will not apply to places of worship.

A spokesperson for the Scottish Government said: “Places of worship are exempt from capacity limits.

“We strongly advise encouraging congregations and visitors to physically distance in places of worship where possible, unless this adversely impacts on fundamental aspects of           worship, and to undertake Lateral Flow Testing before attending services or gatherings.”

This could mean some churches may choose to re-introduce safety precautions such as pre-booking.

During the lawsuit earlier this year that found the closure of churches during the lockdown was unlawful, one of the key arguments was surrounding the safety of churches.

James Bundy, the Director of Operations for Freedom Declared Foundation, which promotes freedom of religion, previously stated: “One of the key judgements in the court case was that they managed to adapt juries and the right to a fair trial [during the pandemic], and because they could adapt that human right, they should be able to adapt places of worship to be Covid secure.

“They have no evidence that there’s been a Covid outbreak in a place of worship, particularly in a church.”

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