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Church seeks ‘equal treatment’ with pubs and restaurants

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The Catholic Church is petitioning the NSW government to permit larger religious gatherings.

In a handful of hours, the petition has gained more than 6000 signatures, calling on the NSW Premier to extend the limit on religious gatherings from 10 to 50 people in line with the recommendations for pubs, clubs and restaurants.

Catholic Archbishop of Sydney Anthony Fisher told Deborah Knight many churchgoers view church as an essential service and expects the petition to gain tens of thousands more signatures in the days ahead.

He says churches will enforce social distancing in pews with stickers and barriers, and place a temporary ban on the sharing of collection plates, hymn books and communion cups.

“We’re adapting to make sure that the Church is safe – in fact, I’m convinced it will be safer than a lot of the other things that are already reopening.

“We’re just looking for equal treatment, we don’t want any special deals or special privileges.”

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