Catholic collective protests 15-person limit in churches
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Catholic collective protests 15-person limit in churches

Credit: Belga

Around 140 people protested in front of the Justice Ministry in Brussels on Tuesday evening to demand the 15-person limit in churches be reviewed.

The protesters were calling for the restrictions to be proportional to the size of the churches instead.

Besides a series of speeches, the protesters rang bells to make their voices heard by members of the federal government and bishops.

They also carried slogans on placards and banners such as “The sacred too is essential”, “For free masses” or “15 people and the rest?”

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“When the non-essential shops were able to reopen, they were given measures proportional to their surface area,” said Thérèse Van Houtte, spokesperson for the “Pour la messe libre” collective, which organised the rally.

“The churches remained closed and a petition was signed by 13,000 people asking to speak about places of worship in the Covid consultative committees,” Van Houtte continued, saying that a meeting followed which led to the 15-person rule.

“We feel that this measure is unfair because we have some buildings that are immense,” she continued. “The parish priest of the Basilica of Koekelberg has also appealed to the Council of State to demand proportional measures.”

Van Houtte added that rallies were organised before Christmas, outside, in front of churches, but the police asked the participants to disperse.

The next meeting with representatives of the federal government is scheduled for 26 January.

The Brussels Times