The Diocese of Sweden has issued a statement announcing the new measures taken by the Swedish government for the protection of public health, reports the Orthodox Times.
The announcement stated that from November 24 until December 22, the maximum number allowed in gathering places is set at eight (8) people, a measure which includes the temples as well.
During the Divine Liturgy and the Holy Sacraments that are to be performed during this period, up to six (6) persons can participate, as the foreseen total number of eight (8) persons includes the priest and his assistant.
In case of non-compliance with this decision and in the possibility of control by the competent authorities of the State, the provided penalties are a fine, imprisonment and the closure of the church until the lifting of the measures imposed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Metropolitan Cleopas of Sweden asked the faithful not to give occasion for the local Orthodox Church to cause unfavorable comments with unknown consequences. For this reason, the Metropolitan stressed the importance of the strict observance in the attendance and in the upcoming Holy Sacraments, with the participation of up to six (6) people.