Churches, mosques, and chapels in the City of Manila can now accept larger crowds, up to a third of seating capacity starting Monday, as restrictions on travel and business continue to ease.
Mayor Isko Moreno signed an executive order authorizing the increase in allowable capacity to 30% from 10%. Only citizens aged 18 to 65 years old are allowed to physically attend religious gatherings. Minors are still prohibited from joining. Health protocols such as wearing of face masks plus shields and frequent disinfections will still be in place.
“There is a need to promote not only the social and economic well-being [of] our constituents but also their spiritual well-being,” Moreno said in a statement.
Bishop Broderick Pabillo, Apostolic Administrator of Manila, told TeleRadyo that parish priests were allowed to hold Simbang Gabi, or dawn masses, in school gymnasiums to prevent crowding in churches.