Catholic bishops welcome ‘realistic’ new measures for public Masses in France

Bishops in France have welcomed new government measures that will allow more people to attend public Masses during Advent.

Gérald Darmanin, French Minister of the Interior, announced Dec. 2 a change to a previously proposed 30-person limit on attendance of public Masses.

The change followed France’s highest administrative court overturning the restriction in response to a legal appeal by the Catholic bishops’ conference.

Under the revised measures, people will be required to leave two free seats between each person or family and to only occupy every other pew.

The French bishops’ conference issued a statement Dec. 2 calling the new measure “more realistic” as it is proportionate to each church’s building capacity.

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