A West Donegal parish has made the decision to make all Christmas services ‘online only’ due to growing concern over the spread of Covid-19.
Kincasslagh parish priest Fr Pat Ward told the community last night that there will no longer be any physical attendance at Masses this weekend.
The rapid spread of the virus just days before Christmas prompted the decision, Fr Ward said.
“It’s the perfect storm with travel, a new Variant, and the surge of new cases since we left level 5, and I believe the government will have all masses online by the weekend,” Fr Ward told parishioners on social media.
“I think that the best thing we can do to keep people safe is to move the Christmas masses ‘online only’ from this moment on. I am no longer confident that we can ensure the safety of our congregations.”
A new online Mass schedule for Christmas Eve and Christmas day will be confirmed for St. Mary’s Church in the coming days.
“In the midst of what I am hearing from those who know, and from the stats, I do not wish to play Russian roulette with people’s health,” Fr Ward added, thanking all those who have assisted the clergy with the organisation of Masses.
The announcement from Kincasslagh Parish comes as tickets for Masses across Donegal have been snapped up for Christmas 2020. Parishes are scheduling additional services to facilitate social distancing, while many more members of congregations will be attending online via webcam live-streams.