The Secretariat of the Slovenian Bishops' Conference (SBC) provides an interpretation of the Ordinance on Temporary Measures for Prevention and Control of Infections with Infectious Disease COVID-19 (OfficialGazette 174/2021), adopted by the Government of the Republic of Slovenia on November 5, 2021, and effective from November 8, 2021
1. The performance of religious rituals is permitted if the following conditions are met:
All participants over the age of 12 must meet the PCT condition (recovered, vaccinated, tested).
The responsible person of the parish (priest/administrator) must hang a notice on the obligation to meet the PCT condition in a visible place.
At the church entrance, a responsible person (parish priest or a person authorized by him, e.g. a sexton, an altar boy, a member of PPC) checks the PCT condition of believers (it is necessary to scan QR codes and check the identity document).
Priests and other people performing religious activities (e.g. sextons, choirmasters, organists, prayer leaders, and altar boys) must meet the PCT condition. The self-testing with a quick HAG test is sufficient for them(they must keep records and perform tests at least every 48 hours or before starting their work).
It is necessary to ensure the minimum possible contact between the participants. In the case of religious ceremonies in churches and outdoors, the distance between the participants must be at least 1.5 meters (exceptbetween persons from the same household). The use of an appropriate mask (surgical or FPP2) is mandatory. Fabric masks are not sufficient.
Regular aeration/ventilation of rooms (e.g. opening windows) in which religious freedom is collectively exercised, is mandatory.
It is obligatory to disinfect hands when entering and leaving enclosed spaces in which religious freedom is collectively exercised.
2. Folk and choral singing in churches is permitted. However, singers must wear masks while singing and maintain a distance of 1.5 meters (except between people from the same household).
3. Implementing religious or spiritual education (religious classes, spiritual retreats, seminars, etc.) is allowed if the persons performing religious or spiritual education meet the PCT condition (self-testing at least every 48 hours or before the start of the work is sufficient).
Children under the age of 12 are not required to meet the PCT condition. Nevertheless, parents are requested to self-test their children with a quick HAG test.
Primary school and secondary school students over the age of 12 must meet the PCT condition. It is not enough to submit a certificate of doing a quick HAG test for self-testing, which they made for the school purpose.
4. Individual spiritual care is permitted without the PCT condition. However, the use of masks is mandatory.
5. The sacraments of confession, baptism, marriage and other worship may be celebrated with the proper observance of the provisions for Holy Masses.
Feasts and gatherings of pastoral significance are permitted if an organizer and participants meet the PCT condition.
6. Church funerals are permitted following the instructions of the municipal services and government regulations and the recommendations of the Nation Institute of Health.
7. A parish office may be open if a priest and a visiting believer meet the PCT condition. Each diocese will prepare more detailed instructions for its territory and forward them to the priests and believers.
Additional explanations: [email protected].
Dr Tadej Strehovec
Secretary-General of SBC
Note: The mentioned provisions derive from the currently valid ordinance, which was adopted by the Government of the Republic of Slovenia and not by SBC (Slovenian bishops). SBC prepared the mentioned interpretation of the government decree only for easier understanding and its implementation in religious activity.