Catholics gathered outside churches across France on Sunday demanding the French government lift its ban on religious services.
Hundreds gathered by a statue of the Virgin Mary in Nantes, while similar gatherings also took place in Strasbourg, Bordeaux and outside St Louis Cathedral in Versailles, the AP reports. Demonstrators held up banners saying “Let us pray” and “We want Mass”.
Catholics also protested and sang hymns for hours outside Saint-Sulpice church in Paris on Friday, but police banned a similar demonstration planned for Sunday as it did not respect social distancing rules.
The French government banned public worship for the month of November as part of a second lockdown to control the spread of the coronavirus, despite protests from the country’s bishops. Religious buildings remain open for private prayer.
Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin is due to meet with religious leaders on Monday to discuss reopening public worship, however there is no suggestion of lifting restrictions early. He also called on believers to stay home rather than protest, and to watch religious services online.