The Queensland Government announced the good news that the Greater Brisbane Region lockdown will end at 6pm this evening (11 January) with some precautions to remain in place until the 22nd of January.
Please note the following restrictions, which are in effect through until 1:00AM on 22 January, only apply to the Greater Brisbane Region. The Greater Brisbane Region includes the Local Council areas of Brisbane, Moreton Bay, Ipswich, Redlands and Logan. These restrictions also apply to people who have been in the Greater Brisbane Region on or after the 2 January 2021 and subsequently travelled to an alternative location.
Current advice for people inside this area is that people may only leave their house for these reasons:
• You must carry a face mask with you at all times when you leave home and you must wear a mask in indoor spaces such as shopping centres, supermarkets, retail outlets churches, indoor workplaces (where you can’t socially distance), public transport, and rideshare.
• It is recommended you wear a mask when outdoors if you are unable to stay more than 1.5m distance from other people.
• Children under 12 years and people affected by a medical condition or disability are exempt.
• Read about face masks: how to use, wear and change
Impact on Parishes within the Greater Brisbane Region
These restrictions only apply to parishes in the Greater Brisbane Region (see map) and to all priests from outside that region who visited, and left, the Greater Brisbane region since the 2nd of January:
• The occupancy of Churches has been reduced to 1 person per 4 square metres during this time.
• Churches may open for Masses but face masks must be worn by everyone in attendance.
• The presider is required to wear a mask upon entering and exiting the Church. You may remove the mask as you begin Mass.
• It is recommended that parishes have a supply of masks available for parishioners who may arrive without one. Parishioners who refuse to wear a mask are not allowed to enter unless they are a child under 12 years old or a person affected by a medical condition or disability.
• The Body of Christ should continue to be administered only in the hand and the chalice should be received by the celebrant alone. Avoid direct physical contact where possible and limit contact to hands.
• Funerals and weddings may have a maximum of 100 attendees.
• No visitors are permitted to aged care facilities, disability accommodation services, correctional facilities, or hospitals (with the exception of an end of life visit for a patient) through 22 January.
• In the parish office, masks only need to be worn in the office when a distance of 1.5 metres cannot be maintained.
• Parish events (such as youth ministry gatherings) with 500 people or less – must comply with a COVID Safe Event Checklist, no further approval needed. Events with 500 to 10,000 people – must comply with a COVID Safe Event Plan approved by local public health units.
For Parishes outside the Greater Brisbane Region
• Individuals who have been in Greater Brisbane on or since the 2nd January 2021 must wear a face mask in the church. It is recommended that this requirement is included as a screening question prior to entry (at registration stage).
For more detailed information please visit the Queensland Health website here.
Please remember that if you are experiencing any symptoms, please get tested and quarantine at home until you receive a negative result. Thank you for keeping our parish communities safe.