…Church to have several Masses in a day
Desmond Munemo, H-Metro Reporter
The Catholic Church in Zimbabwe will conduct several Masses in a day to accommodate its 1.4 million members in response to the Covid-19 church gathering limit of 50 people set by the Government to curb the spread of the pandemic.
President Mnangagwa last week announced the easing of restrictions on Church gatherings as the nation adapts to living in the Covid-19 environment.
However, the Catholic Church has a considerable number of members in Harare, Bulawayo, Masvingo, Mutare, Chinhoyi, Gweru, Gokwe and Hwange Dioceses averaging over 1000 members at each parish.
The Catholic church is tasked with accommodating its vast congregation while adhering to Government directives
ZCBC Secretary General, Fr Frederick Chiromba confirmed to this publication that in light with the developments, Catholics will celebrate several Masses in a day to accommodate all the members.
“The Church will conduct several celebrations and each service will not exceed more than one hour.
“Between the services, there should be a gap of 30 minutes before another service begins.” He explained.
In a statement, Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference (ZCBC) encouraged worshiping on open spaces and recommended strict hygienic measures at the gatherings following the immediate resumption of all church celebrations.
Below is the statement;
“All people to be sanitised at the gate with temperatures taken and monitored where possible.
“Anyone with a temperature of 37.5 degree Celsius and above should not be let in.
“A register of all people who enter at the gate to be kept strictly with full names and contact numbers.
“No physical meetings of groups such as parish councils, associations, catechumens are allowed.
“Entrance and exit of the church should not be crowded.
“One meter distance to be observed.
“No consumption of items within the church premises.
“A maximum number of 50 members inclusive of priests.
“A task team to be put in place in each place to supervise the adherence of regulations.
“Team members should be qualified in health matters.
“Proper signage with all information be places in strategic places.
“All items inside the church such as switches, furniture, door handles should be sanitised.
“All pews should be sanitised immediately after each church service.
“One meter distance between people with clear demarcations.
“No sharing of any items such as bibles, microphones, hymn books, leaflets, offertory boxes, sign of peace.
“Everyone to put on proper face masks.
“Toilets should be thoroughly sanitised and cleaned.
“Adequate tissues to be provided in each toilet.
“No crowding in or near toilets.”
“Hand washing facilities with running water to be provided.
“Provide proper bins with lids at all points for the disposal of items such as tissues and masks.
ZCBC further recommended that old people and those with underlying medical problems are dispensed from church attendance while livestreaming is set to continue for those who cannot not attend.