“The worst thing to do would be to open too soon, too brutally and be led to close again” French President Emmanuel Macron said a few days ago. facing the coronavirus pandemic, the government wants to be highly cautious and avoid a second contamination wave in France. Thereby, Emmanuel Macron explained first he does not want to reopen places of worship or big gatherings to take place before the end of summer.
On May 7, 2020, Secretary of the Interior Christophe Castaner added: "We will work with all cultural officials to the conditions for resuming religious celebrations by the end of the month". But on Monday May 18, the Council of State, the highest administrative jurisdiction in France demanded the State to lift the ban within eight days.
Alerted by asociations, the Council of State has estimated in a decree that this ban "severely and illegaly damages" the freedom of worship. According to the President of the court, "softer supervision measures" could be made such as "tolerating gatherings under 10 people in other places open to the public".
This is now official. A decree released in the Journal Officiel in the night from May 22 to 23 authorizes religious ceremonies to resume from now on, but respecting strict measures made by Christophe Castaner and cult leaders.
"If the goal to resume religious ceremonies on June 3rd, it will be able to celebrate again and little by little all services" as soon as the decree is released the Secretary of the Interior says.
Among the rules to implement: respecting barrier gestures and social distancing, wearing a facemask, washing one's hands, and regulating entrances in places of worship in order not to exceed a maximum mark.
Measures are applied "to anyone over 11 years old entering or staying in those places" the decree says. In case of breaking the rules, "departmental prefects are allowed to ban the opening or order the closure of a place of worship".