News by email Donate


UK News

Catholic church stops sign of peace to combat flu

by Eno Adeogun

The Diocese of Down and Connor has also told priests to disinfect their hands before distributing Holy Communion, while offering wine from a shared chalice has been temporality stopped.

The measures have been taken as a strain of influenza known as Australian flu is contributing to pressures on the NHS this winter.

Fr Edward McGee told Premier why Catholics shouldn't oppose the measures.

Speaking during Premier's News Hour, he said: "Our faith tells us - yes we act in faith but also that God gifted us with the gift of reason.

"So we also must respond [to] the advice and guidance of those that are experts in this area.

"The healthcare professionals are the instrument of God's care in the world as well.

"So to follow their advice is actually to cooperate with the grace of God in trying to respond in the most reasonable and rational and caring way to those who are vulnerable in our society at this time."

The priest said the church was told by a public health agency to do more to prevent the very infectious strain of Influenza.

He explained: "They indicated that we move beyond pre-epidemic thresholds.

"The indications now are that the Australian flu has quite a severe impact on people."

The diocese last implemented infection prevention measures during the swine flu epidemic in 2009.

Listen to Fr Edward McGee speaking with Premier's Eno Adeogun:

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email