Easter cancelled at Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin

The Garda have requested that the front gates of Christ Church Cathedral remain locked as Dublin celebrates the 100th anniversary of the rising.

Church of Ireland congregations in Dublin will have to make other plans for celebrating Easter this year, as the government has banned vehicular traffic in the city centre, effectively closing the churches to worshippers. The Church of Ireland press office reports that clergy have been informed by the government there will be no access to their churches on Easter Sunday and the Garda Síochána have requested that the front gates of Christ Church Cathedral remain locked for the day. The decision comes amidst security and crowd control concerns on the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland. Police expect 350,000 to 500,000 visitors to converge on the city centre that day for a parade and ceremonies commemorating the Rising. However, the decision to close the cathedral and six parishes located within the security cordon from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm was taken without consultation with Archbishop Michael Jackson or the diocese. Suburban congregations have extended invitations to the the displaced parishes to worship with them, and Dr. Jackson notes the celebration of the Great Vigil of Easter on Holy Saturday will take place. “People will, understandably, be upset not to be able to worship in their parish churches on Easter Sunday. We are making this decision with regret but in recognition of the fact that people for whom we have a duty of care will find it very difficult to gain access to city centre churches on Easter Day. I look forward to celebrating Easter with the congregations of Christ Church Cathedral and Sandford Parish Church on Easter Morning. After that I intend to take up the invitation of the Government to attend the Ceremony of Commemoration at the GPO on what is a very significant day in the history of the State,” Dr. Jackson said.

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