The Church of Greece’s pleas for religious venues to be open during Greek Orthodox Easter on 2 May did not fall on deaf ears.
Greece’s Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis came to an agreement with Athens Archbishop Ieronymos for churches to remain open but conditions will need to be met such as services for the Resurrection taking place at 9pm and 10pm rather than at midnight.
Today and tomorrow the Holy Synod will discuss this year’s celebrations, and it is expected that churches will be allowed to operate with 100 parishioners in larger churches and with one person per 1.5 square metres for smaller religious facilities. A request has been tendered for the use of church courtyards for outdoor religious celebrations.
The meeting between Mr Mitsotakis and Archbishop Ieronymos was held in the framework of an exhibition in Greek Parliament for the 200-year anniversary of the Greek War of Independence.
On Monday there were 1,607 new COVID-19 cases detected in Greece and 78 deaths, however all through the weekend squares of Athens and Piraeus have been inundated by young people without masks. Signs of lockdown fatigue are evident as Greece battles with its moderate lockdown.
On Monday, a 55-year-old alleged to have acted as a DJ at a coronaparty at St George Square in Kypseli was arrested. SKAI news reports that there were 3,000-5,000 people gathered at the square until 6am with crowds leaving behind plastic cups, drink bottles and other rubbish for municipality cleaners to take care of.