Catholic churches to reopen for Phase 1 after MCCY allows engagement of its volunteers

A Roman Catholic Church in Singapore. (PHOTO: Martin Abbugao/AFP via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — Catholic churches can be reopened for private prayers during Phase 1 of the COVID-19 post-circuit breaker period, after being allowed to engage volunteers to assist in putting up the necessary safe management practices.

This is a reversal of the original decision by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Singapore not to reopen the churches in Phase 1, as it was not allowed to engage volunteers to set up measures in compliance with safe management guidelines.

In a statement put up on its website on Tuesday (2 June), the Archdiocese said that the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) has agreed to allow the churches to engage their pool of volunteers to assist in the provision of essential services.

“This is a critical factor in our review of the earlier decision, as our churches are heavily dependent on volunteers to run their many activities and MCCY’s earlier guidelines of 25 May did not permit the use of volunteers in queue management,” it said in the statement.

“As such, our churches’ lean staff strength did not make it possible for us to put in place the necessary safe management practices to enable the churches to reopen for private worship.”

With the engagement of volunteers, churches that are able to put in place the necessary protocols for safe management will open for private worship as and when they are ready.

The Catholic faithful are encouraged to check with the respective parishes on their readiness to open, and the operating hours for private worship.

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