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Guests at wedding receptions to increase to 50 - but Tánaiste says communions and confirmations are 'off'

Leo Varadkar said communions and confirmations are “off, unfortunately”.

Image: Shutterstock/paralisart

Updated Jun 29th 2021, 4:27 PM

THE NUMBER OF people allowed at wedding receptions will increase to 50 next Monday, Taoiseach Micheál Martin has confirmed. 

The current rules allow for 50 people to attend a ceremony (religious or civil; outdoor or indoor) but just 25 people are permitted at a wedding receptions after the ceremony. 

From 5 July, wedding already planned will be permitted to proceed on the basis of the expected changes for July, with 50 guests permitted to attend wedding receptions with protective measures in place. 

Speaking at a post-Cabinet briefing this afternoon, the Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said communions and confirmations are “off, unfortunately”. 

A senior HSE official last week recommended that some dioceses defer communions and confirmations until September to help curb the spread of Covid-19. 

Dr Rose Fitzgerald, the director of the Department of Public Health Mid-West, sent a letter to the dioceses of Cashel-Emily, Limerick, and Killaloe to recommend postponing the ceremonies “due to the current high rate of Covid-19 infection in the mid west region”. 

Addressing the nation this afternoon outside Government Buildings, the Taoiseach said: “Given its very special nature, the number of guests attending weddings can increase to 50 as planned.

“However, a return to other activities, including hospitality, will be delayed.” 

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During his address, Martin confirmed the planned reopening of indoor hospitality is to be delayed beyond the planned 5 July date following a “stark” assessment from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) about the potential spread of the Delta variant of Covid-19.

“Last night, we were advised by public health officials in very stark terms that proceeding exactly as planned on 5 July carries a real risk of greatly increased spread of the virus, increased hospital admissions illness and death,” he said. 

NPHET also said in its advice to government that indoor dining could initially return for fully vaccinated persons only before a wider reopening at a later point. 

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