"Churches are safe: Time to end the Mass Ban" - Ógra Aontú
Ógra Aontú have called for restrictions around religious ceremonies to be eased. Chairperson Jason Conroy said:
“A big section of the Irish population consider public worship essential”
“The government’s policy of banning public worship is negatively affecting people’s mental health and well-being. For many people in Ireland, acts of public worship, such as the Mass, are absolutely essential for their spiritual lives.”
Jason continued: “The data shows that churches are some of the safest places in Ireland, thanks to the great efforts of parish volunteers.”
“The government has shown no evidence that public worship is a threat to public health.
Yet Ireland continues to be the only place in Europe apart from Slovenia and Slovakia where people are banned from going to religious ceremonies.”
“Even the World Health Organisation says that people’s spiritual needs should be considered before locking down public worship.”
“The government must be brought to account for this unreasonable and damaging policy, which slams a door in the face of Irish people, and ignores their basic needs.
People of all faiths in Ireland have been put at the bottom of the government’s priority list. Their needs have been disregarded. They are suffering from the public worship ban, and want an end to it. Their beliefs should be taken into account by the government.”
“Ógra Aontú believes in a true, pluralistic, democratic Republic, where people’s different needs and beliefs are taken into account. We acknowledge and accept the widely differing beliefs of our fellow citizens. We expect everyone’s freedom and equality to be guaranteed, so that all Irish people, of all beliefs and backgrounds, can call Ireland home.”
“Not everyone considers public worship an essential service. But many do. Ireland’s many religious citizens, Catholics, Protestants, Muslims and Jews - who contribute hugely to our society as workers and public servants - cannot be at home in this country as long as their needs are so undervalued.”
He concluded: “For all these reasons: safe, essential public worship must be reopened immediately for all Irish people.”