Following on from Taoiseach Micheal Martin’s statement this evening.

We welcome the sucess of the vaccination programme to date, the lower numbers of new cases reported this evening and look forward to the further rollout of the vaccination programme.

However it was with great disappointment that he did not refer to the public celebration of the sacraments, to indicate a timeframe to when we can return to celebrating them publicly again.

Just like you we too as clergy are frustrated and disappointed with the government’s response not just to the Catholic Church but to all faith groups.

The Bishops have met with and made representations to the Taoiseach and government with little success.

We acknowledge the increase in numbers that can attend funerals, from April 26th, as the restrictions to date have added greatly to the pain already experienced by the grieving family and friends of the deceased.

While we fully support and understand the effort to keep people safe and well, there is no acknowledgment from Government of the hard work done by members of our parishes to create a safe space in which you our parishioners could participate in the public celebration of the Mass and sacraments.

We appeal to our elected representatives to treat our calls to safely reopen our churches as a priority and ask you to use any and all opportunities to make representation on our behalf to this request. 

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