Gov’t OKs 50% capacity for religious gatherings in GCQ areas starting Feb 15
MANILA, Philippines — From 30 percent, the government has increased to 50 percent the allowed capacity for religious gatherings in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ) starting on Monday, February 15.
“Inapruban po ng IATF [Inter–Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases] ang pag-relax or pagluwag ng restrictions sa mga relihiyosong pagtitipon sa lugar na nasa general community quarantine simula Lunes, akinse ng Pebrero,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a televised briefing.
(The IATF has approved relaxing or easing restrictions for religious gatherings in areas under general community quarantine starting Monday, February 15.)
“Pinapayagan na sa mga lugar na nasa GCQ ang religious service na hanggang 50 percent ng seating o venue capacity,” he added.
In this photo taken on September 2, 2020, a seminarian (R) wearing a face shield gives communion to Catholics during a mass inside a church in Manila. – Many face the new normal in the Philippines, where it is now compulsory to wear both face masks and plastic shields in indoor public spaces and on public transport to curb the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. (Photo by Ted ALJIBE / AFP)
(Religious services in GCQ areas are now allowed up to 50 percent capacity of their seating or venue capacity.)
For the month of February, areas under GCQ are Metro Manila, the Cordillera Administrative Region, Batangas province, Tacloban City, Davao City, Davao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, and Iligan City. The rest of the country is under a modified GCQ.
Relaxing of restrictions for religious services comes before the beginning of the Catholic Lenten season on Ash Wednesday, February 17.
Cabinet Secretary and IATF co-chairperson Karlo Nograles earlier said sprinkling ash on top of a devout’s head would still be observed over the usual marking of the cross on the forehead for this year’s Ash Wednesday.
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