Vatican: Saint Peter's Basilica to reopen for mass with temperature checks

Vatican: Saint Peter's Basilica to reopen for mass with temperature checks
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Officials at Saint Peter's Basilica on Thursday said the church would reopen its doors for Mass on May 18 with temperature checks for all worshippers.

Director of the Holy See Press Office Matteo Bruni said Papal Basilicas's representatives discussed reopening measures in a meeting "promoted by the Secretariat of State," Vatican News reported.

The representatives reportedly discussed "new aspects of Phase 2" reopening guidelines that Italy is now on, following lockdowns imposed due to the coronavirus.

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According to Phase 2 guidelines, churches will be able to reopen for services and congregation on May 18, just in time for celebrating Holy Mass, the report added.

Bruni said in a press release that anyone who participates in liturgical celebrations would require examination before entry using a thermoscanner to curb further spread of COVID-19, according to Vatican News.

In the Lazio region of Italy, where Rome is located, there have been 7,364 reported cases of COVID-19, with 604 deaths resulting from the virus, according to Johns Hopkins data. Holy See has reported 12 cases in total with zero fatalities.