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Churches: Coronavirus

Question for Church Commissioners

UIN 42228, tabled on 1 May 2020

To ask the right hon. Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, for what reasons churches and other places of worship were not listed as essential services in the covid-19 lockdown guidance.

Answered on

5 May 2020

Following the address to the nation made by the Prime Minister on the 23rd March, the Church of England took the difficult decision that it would ask this clergy to close their parish churches to the public due to the unprecedented high risk of transmission of the covid-19 virus. While the church buildings and halls were shut, their congregations have continued, where possible, to live out their vocation and mission to serve the needs of their local communities during the lockdown period.

The Government listed the clergy as key workers during the medical emergency, and it has enabled them to continue to meet the needs of their communities right across the country, serving as chaplains, officiating at funerals, administering last rites, operating food banks and other essential community services.

Answered by

Church Commissioners