Churches were empty at the weekend due to the spread of Covid-19, with weekday and Sunday Masses having been cancelled across many diocese.
After communicating with several priests in the Cloyne Diocese, Bishop William Crean decided on Friday, that the most prudent decision was for all weekday Masses and weekend Masses to be cancelled, including St Patrick’s Day. In the current emergency situation, all are dispensed from the obligation to physically attend Sunday Mass.
While priests continued to say Mass, the Faithful are asked to be spiritually with them and to avail of streaming services, such as one from Mitchelstown Parish Church on the Mitchelstown Parish Website (www.mitchelstownparish.ie) on Saturday evenings at 7.30pm and on Sunday morning at 8.30am and 11.30am.
Mass also continues to be streamed from St Mary’s Church, Mallow on https://www.churchservices.tv/mallow at the usual times of Saturday at 6.30pm and on Sunday at 8.30 and 11.00am.
People are also asked to follow the guidelines already issued with regard to funerals, weddings and baptisms.
Bishop Crean assures the people that priests ‘will continue to remember the needs of parishioners at Masses celebrated privately’.
Church bells rang out simultaneously throughout the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore at 11am on St Patrick’s Day following a call by Bishop Phonsie Cullinan to do so ‘in order to celebrate our national patron’.
He said the bell ringing was ‘a call to prayer – wherever you are – and a remidner of the faith that has sustained the people of our island throughout the centuries’.
“The bell ringing is also an expression of social solidarity, an encouragement to care for one another, and for all of us to be inspired and remain hopeful at the difficult time.”