Police interrupted a Good Friday church service yesterday, threatening worshipers with £200 fines for breaking Covid rules. Standing behind the lectern, one officer said the service was “unlawful”, adding: “You need to go home.” The Sun has the story.
Cops shut down a Good Friday church service and threatened the congregation with fines.
Two officers were filming striding up to the lectern yesterday to tell worshippers to go home.
They said there were too many people in Christ the King Church, which serves a Polish congregation, in Balham, South London, at 6pm yesterday.
One officer said: “At this moment in time you need to go home.
“Failure to comply with this direction to leave and go to your home address, ultimately could lead you to be fined £200 or, if you fail to give your details, to you being arrested.
“It’s Good Friday and I appreciate you would like to worship, but it is unlawful.”
The church has responded, saying that the police “brutally exceeded their powers”.
We believe… that the police brutally exceeded their powers by issuing their warrant for no good reason, as all Government requirements were met.
We believe municipal police officials have been misinformed about the current place of worship guidelines, claiming that the reason for their intervention is the continued ban on public celebration in places of worship in London due to the lockdown on January 4th, 2021.
We regret that the rights of the faithful have been wronged on such an important day for every believer and that our worship has been profaned.
The Sun highlights that “current guidelines do allow worshiping in churches to go ahead, with proper safety reviews and social distancing in place”.
Worth reading in full.
A video recording of this events has been posted on Twitter, and can be watched here.