Coronavirus plea: Top bishop urges Government to fully reopen churches

Jun 21, 2020 by

by David Williamson, Daily Express:

ONE of the most prominent figures in world Anglicanism has asked why Primark and B&Q can open but churches are still banned from holding corporate worship.

The Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, the former Bishop of Rochester, wants people of all faiths to gain new freedoms to gather together providing they do so safely.

Under present lockdown rules places of worship in England can open for private prayer but not for services other than funerals.

The bishop – who was once a top contender to become Archbishop of Canterbury – warned there is a “serious question” as to whether any government has the power under human rights law to close down places of worship without the consent of the owners of the buildings.

Questioning why non-essential shops are able to open with safety provisions in place but not churches, he said: “If Primark and B&Q can be open for significant numbers of people to be there for a reasonable period, it is difficult to see why churches and other places of worship cannot be open for corporate worship for similar or fewer numbers.”

He welcomed the recent relaxation of the lockdown rules that allows people to enter a church for private prayer but said: “Let us hope that this limited reopening will lead to a fuller reopening for congregations to gather, even if in smaller numbers, at different times, and with strict attention to safety.”

Read here

See also:

Letter to MP on Christian churches meeting together:We are writing as Christians here in Morecambe and beyond to ask you as our Member of Parliament to urge Her Majesty’s Government to lift the restrictions on our local churches meeting together…”

The C of E has forgotten the power of the parishby Giles Fraser, UnHerd

Cardinal Nichols calls for open-air church over summerby Heather Preston, Premier

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