Pastoral Statement to clergy of Killaloe diocese – Bishop Fintan Monahan – March 24th, 2020
The Sacrament of Baptism
Following on from today’s Government announcement limiting social gatherings to a maximum of four people – Except in the case of danger of death Baptisms should be postponed until further notice.
The Sacrament of Reconciliation
- The normal schedule of Confessions in churches has ceased for the time being.
Pastoral Care of the Elderly and the Sick (First Friday Calls)
- On the basis of the public health guidelines, First Friday house visits and other pastoral house visits should cease except in the cases of the anointing of those who are seriously or gravely ill (see below).
- Pastoral visits can be replaced for the time being with other forms of pastoral outreach such as telephone conversations with prayers and blessings.
The Anointing of Those who are Dying
- Considering the risks and dangers at this present time, it is not expected that priests in parishes will be called upon to anoint someone with Covid-19 in their homes. It is foreseen that anyone seriously ill with Covid-19 will be transferred to hospital. The hospital chaplains will follow hospital protocols in anointing such patients.
- If it should happen in the future that it appears priests might be called to anoint a person with Covid-19, advice should be sought from the HSE and the advice and guidance of hospital chaplains.