Perugia, Italy, Apr 24, 2020 / 07:30 am
The president of the Italian bishops' conference has written a letter calling for Sunday Mass to resume in Italy as the country begins to ease coronavirus lockdown restrictions.
"The time has come to resume the celebration of the Sunday Eucharist and church funerals, baptisms and all the other sacraments, naturally following those measures necessary to guarantee security in the presence of more people in public places," Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti of Perugia wrote in a letter to his diocese April 23.
Public Masses throughout Italy have been suspended for nearly seven weeks after the Italian government issued a decree March 8 suspending all public religious ceremonies, including funerals.
Italian Prime Minister Guiseppe Conte said April 21 that the government will release a plan by the end of the week for how Italy will go about slowly lifting coronavirus restrictions and reopening businesses after May 3. This plan could also provide an indication of when public religious gatherings will be able to resume.