Greek Church ‘cannot cherry-pick’ laws, say government sources

Greek Church ‘cannot cherry-pick’ laws, say government sources

The Greek Church cannot “cherry-pick” among the health rules and restrictions that have been imposed to stem the spread of the coronavirus, government sources said on Monday, in response to an announcement by the Holy Synod that it intends to defy a government closure of all places of worship to celebrate the feast of the Epiphany on January 6.

“We hope that the Church will realize the urgency of these times for society, as it has done so far,” the sources said, noting that the government has sought dialogue with the Church at all stages of the pandemic, showing “respect for public health and people’s faith.”

It reminded that it also allowed churches to open on Christmas and New Year’s.

The Holy Synod of the Church of Greece on Monday issued a statement expressing its opposition to the government’s decision to impose a stricter lockdown this week that includes the closure of all places of worship.

The Church’s governing body said that churches would open as originally planned on the holiday of the Epiphany on Wednesday, carrying out services and the customary blessing of the waters ceremony.

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