Almost nine out of 10 readers of The Irish Catholic online want a swifter return to public Masses as soon as it is safe to do so, rather than the July 20 deadline set by the Government in the Republic. In the North, where a ban on churches opening was lifted this week, there is no timeframe for Masses to recommence.
In an online poll, readers were asked “if churches can show – like other spheres of society – that small public gatherings can begin safely with physical distancing and hygiene measures, do you think small public Masses should begin sooner than currently planned?”
Of those who expressed an opinion, 87% said they think that small public Masses should begin sooner than currently planned”. Just 13% voted ‘no’, saying they believe that public Masses should not return sooner, even if it is safe to do so.
It comes a week after research by Amárach found that more Irish people are anxious to see a return to public Masses than to pubs and restaurants with almost a quarter ranking churches in their top five not important.
When it came to restaurants and cafes, 21% of people ranked them in the top five. Just eight percent of people ranked pubs in their top five while just one percent of people ranked theatres and music venues in their top five things that they would give priority to opening.