IATF relents on Holy Week church gatherings

THE Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) relented and has approved the conduct of religious gatherings during the Holy Week or from April 1 to April 4.

IATF-EID and Presidential spokesman Harry Roque Jr. made the announcement on Friday.

According to Roque, indoor seating capacity inside churches and places of worship will be limited to 10 percent.

Roque said the task force encourages the use of a reservation system to help churches adhere to the 10 percent capacity rule.

Live singing in places of worship shall be strictly limited while recorded singing is encouraged, Roque also said.

The IATF released its ruling a day after the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) announced that it would close its churches on Holy Week and encouraged the public to instead go online for the religious services.

This is to contain the further spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) that has seen a surge in Metro Manila and nearby provinces over the past weeks.