While parishioners across the diocese of Ferns were delighted to be able to return to their local churches in recent weeks, they are not areas that have been exempt from the major changes brought on by Covid-19.
Priests across the diocese have been busy implementing procedures to ensure that people are safe while attending mass and that they are fully compliant with Department of Health Guidelines.
For example, at St Alphonsus' Church in Barntown, parishioners have been greeted by stewards Caitriona Walsh, Bernard McGuinness and John Maher, who have been installed to ensure the correct procedures are followed. They show mass goers to the hand-sanitising facilities, point out floor markings and show them to their seats, as well as being on hand to reassure people and answer any questions that they might have.
Fr John Carroll at Barntown Church said that the system has worked very well thus far and that 'the stewards represent the diocese's commitment to offer the safest and healthiest environment possible for worship.'