Greek Church leader requests exemption to coronavirus curfew

Greek Church leader requests exemption to coronavirus curfew

Greek Archbishop Ieronymos requested an exemption from coronavirus curfew measures in a letter to the Education and Religion Minister Niki Kerameus on Thursday, asking to carry on liturgies on a normal schedule, behind closed doors.

The request comes as a joint ministerial decision suspending all religious services expires on March 30.

Before the lockdown, introduced on March 23, the government had allowed only emergency services such as funerals, with a restricted number of attendees, and church visits for individual prayers only, with distances kept among the faithful. Current curfew exemption reasons do not include individual prayer at churches.

Curently, people are now only allowed to leave their house to go to work, shop for food or medicine, visit a doctor or walk the dog.

In his letter, Ieronymos claims that the exception "will contribute decisively to allowing the lay members of the Church to keep their composure."

He also requested an exception for services within hospitals and monasteries.

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