The Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Church has renewed its call to churches and monasteries to follow the strict guidelines issued by the government to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
The note was sent to Metropolises and metropolitans around the country who in turn are asked to notify the clergy, monks and nuns and the members of the Ecclesiastical Councils.
The announcement was made ahead of two major religious holidays- the Transfiguration of Jesus (August 6) and , and the Dormition of the Theotokos (August 15).
They are religious events which “a large participation is witnessed in church services and due to the increase in novel coronavirus infections, particularly in Attica.”
The Holy Synod’s message came after Deputy Civil Protection and Crisis Management Minister Nikos Hardalias announced new rules for face masks in Greece.
From Wednesday people will also be required to wear a face mask when entering:
- Shops providing goods and services of all kinds
- Public utility companies
- Doctors’ surgeries
- Municipality buildings
- Food retailers (bakeries, butchers, greengrocers etc)
- Hair salons
- Beauty parlours
Other areas where the use of face masks is already mandatory include:
- All public transport
- Health centres and diagnostic centres
- Staff serving customers at restaurants, cafes and bars
Churches are excluded for the time being.