Belgian Catholics Contest 15-At-a-Time Rule in One of World’s Biggest Churches

BRUSSELS—Brussels’ cavernous basilica is one of the largest churches in the world but COVID-19 rules allow only 15 people at a time to attend mass there, the same limit applied to much smaller religious venues in Belgium. Dozens of worshippers of different religions and clergy demonstrated in the center of the Belgian capital on Sunday calling for a change to the rules. “Here, more than in any other building in Belgium, this law is an incredible absurdity,” said the Catholic basilica’s priest Marc Leroy who joined the protests on Sunday. Together with members of other faith groups he has launched an online petition for the restrictions to be made proportional to the size of buildings. The national basilica, an 8,000 square metre (86,111 square feet) art deco masterpiece which tourist literature describes as the fifth biggest church in the world, towers over the western suburbs of Brussels and can host …

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