Symptoms, transmission, protection: which risk groups are particularly at risk

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Symptoms, transmission, protection: which risk groups are particularly at risk

The “” greatest part of the parishioners “” reacted to the situation with understanding and there were many online church services. “” That was not a substitute, but a good alternative “, explained Kopp,” “the television services were also noticed more.” “

Nevertheless, the fear of infection in the service remains with many, which should also be removed first. In order to prevent coronavirus outbreaks, all instructions from government agencies, in particular the health authorities, should first be observed, said Kopp.

“Basically, the dioceses themselves are solely responsible for measures taken in the dioceses, in accordance with the state authorities and the related decisions for consequences in the dioceses,” explains Kopp. “” All 27 (arch) dioceses have enacted extensive measures that are continuously checked and adapted. So we’re doing everything we can to prevent an outbreak. Attending church services is therefore not a risk. “”

Protestant church

The Evangelical Church also had to struggle with withdrawals before the Corona crisis. Around 270,000 Protestants left the church, around 22 percent more than in the previous year. The number is an extrapolation rounded up and should be just below the previous high, explained a spokesman. There are currently 20.7 million Protestants in Germany, as the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) announced. 

Divine service in Corona times: distance and hygiene rules must be observed in all churches, synagogues and mosques. (Source: Lichtgut / imago images)

“” Even before the official ban on assembly in churches, many Protestant congregations refrained from worship services at the beginning of the corona pandemic in order to avoid infection, “explains a spokeswoman for the EKD when asked by “” The result is a lot of creative digital and also analog offers – from personal calls to church services in front of the balcony to letters. “”

Many of these offers have been collected on the online platform and can still be used. “The Corona crisis has triggered a surge in digitization in the Protestant Church that will permanently change the way we celebrate worship,” the spokeswoman is convinced. “” In the future, many congregations want to increasingly rely on hybrid formats, that is, offer prayer and worship services that can be attended both locally and digitally. “” This was shown by a study on the digitization of Protestant congregations in view of the corona pandemic. 

Nevertheless, normal services are taking place again in the Protestant church, during which it must be ensured that the risk of infection is reduced. “” In the 20 regional churches of the EKD, responsible concepts were negotiated with the respective federal states, in which framework church services can currently be The focus is on compliance with distance and hygiene rules, “” emphasizes the EKD spokeswoman. 


Around 4.4 to 4.7 million Muslims live in Germany, most of them from Turkey (around 50 percent). They come together in more than 2,350 mosque communities. 

Aiman ​​Mazyek is the chairman of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany and explains in an interview with what effects the corona pandemic is having on the Muslim community. “” Health is a great Islamic good, and integrity is a top priority, “he explains. That is why the protection of people is particularly important. There are even concrete instructions for action in Islam in a pandemic situation. These largely coincide with the rules implemented by the federal government. The Muslim communities have therefore implemented the first measures to contain the corona pandemic early on and “acted in an exemplary manner”. 

“Of course that has an extreme impact on us,” emphasizes Mazyek. It was particularly bad that the peak of the pandemic coincided with Ramadan, the Muslim month of fasting. During this time there are usually a particularly large number of joint activities that cannot now take place. In addition, mosques were closed and Friday prayers canceled. “Some of these restrictions still apply today,” he says. “” A lot has changed. “” A lot has been shifted to online offers, but that is not a full replacement. Koran readings, circle meetings, events, celebrations, weddings: all of this can no longer take place or only take place in small groups. 

Mazyek also addresses an additional problem: Due to the lack of services and events, many congregations hardly have any income from donations and collections. “” Many congregations generate around 50 percent of their annual income in Ramadan alone – that cannot be compensated by online donations. “” The current situation is partly “” existentially critical “”. 

Friday prayer in Corona times: Muslims also experience many restrictions due to the Corona crisis. (Source: UIG / imago images)

Nevertheless, the parishioners would react sympathetically: “” Most of them fully understand, but are also sad and of course find it frustrating when so many things can no longer be done what one likes to do. ” are now the rule, but not the same as before the corona pandemic. The spiritual energy, the appreciation of the church work, he too noticed how he missed all of this, says Mazyek. “But of course there is concern that outbreaks can occur if the rules are not observed.” “Wherever rules are broken, outbreaks also occur, the danger is not over yet. 


The Jewish communities in Germany currently have around 100,000 members and are also struggling with the consequences of the corona pandemic.

Synagogues were also closed for weeks and services were not allowed. The Central Council of Jews has also created a dossier to provide the believers with guidelines. There is also a hygiene and health concept for Jewish worship services. It also says “” Virtual worship services are no substitute for public worship services. “” The concept stipulates, for example, that only those who are completely healthy may come to prayer. Even those who only show mild symptoms of the disease are not allowed to appear in the synagogues under any circumstances. In addition, lists of participants are recommended so that an infection can be traced in case of doubt. 

In addition, there should be a minimum distance of 1.50 meters between the worshipers. Chairs and rows of seats should be prepared accordingly, and door handles, seats and prayer books are also regularly disinfected. The wearing of masks is also strongly recommended in the synagogues. 

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Kippot and tallitot (prayer shawls) should no longer be displayed in the synagogues. In future, the Torah should only be excavated by one person instead of two and shown to the community. She is no longer led through the synagogue and is not allowed to be kissed. Celebrations such as post-prayer meals are still banned. 

All religions are affected by the corona pandemic in a similar way – and yet the faith communities have found creative solutions to help them get over the crisis. However, the long-term consequences for the religions are not yet foreseeable. 

Sources used: Own research Evangelical Church GermanyBishops’ Conference GermanyCentral Council of JewsCentral Council of MuslimsFederal Ministry of the InteriorNews Agency dpaAdditional sourcesShow less sources

Church services should soon be allowed again despite Corona, but under strict conditions. Much that believers associate with going to church will not be possible for the time being.

It should no longer be sung at all or at most softly, the host is handed with tongs or plastic gloves, and you have to bring the hymn books with you – this is how church services should look like in Corona times in the future. The Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) and the German Bishops’ Conference (DBK) have now published recommendations for the parishes.

Strict rules in church services

The Corona cabinet wants to discuss this on Monday. The ban on worship, which has been in force since March, will be lifted shortly – however, strict rules to contain the corona virus should apply. The aim is to limit the number of participants. The believers must also keep a safe distance.

There are differences in details in the recommendations that the two churches have submitted to the Federal Ministry of the Interior. The EKD “” urgently recommends (…) wearing mouth and nose protection during the service “”. The bishops take the line that masks should be worn on their own responsibility – “” if necessary “” is the formulation.

Evangelical church services: renouncing singing

Protestant services are to take place without singing until further notice. “Singing together carries a particularly high risk of infection, so it should be avoided for the time being, as well as wind instruments,” says the EKD paper.

The Catholics are not so strict on this point: “” If the rules of distance are observed, there is no reason to forego singing altogether. Loud parish singing should be avoided, however, because singing is risky behavior. “” A spokesman for the DBK explained that everyone should be allowed to sing, but please only softly.

Conditions for the celebration of the Eucharist 

There are also differences in the celebration of the Lord’s Supper. The EKD reminds that a service without the Lord’s Supper is also fully valued: “” If the Lord’s Supper is nevertheless to be celebrated, the chalice communion should be omitted or only take place with individual chalices.

According to the Catholic understanding, the celebration of the Eucharist with the distribution of hosts is of great importance. It should therefore be possible again in the future, but subject to conditions: “” Communion is given to the believers at an appropriate distance, for example with pliers, or priests and communion helpers wear gloves, “” says the recommendations. In addition, the priest should no longer say “” The body of Christ “” when presenting the host, and the mass visitor who receives the host should forego the usual “” Amen “”.

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Both churches have made many other recommendations. The Catholic faithful are asked to bring their own hymn book. The paths in the church “” are marked as one-way paths if possible to prevent them from coming together. Also, a collection basket should no longer be passed on. The usual greeting of peace, where people shake hands, had already been dispensed with in the initial phase of the corona pandemic. The requirement for Catholics to go to church on Sunday does not apply.

Sources used: dpa news agency

The Schleswig Higher Administrative Court has classified the ban on accommodation for tourists from Corona risk areas as unlawful. It follows decisions in other federal states.

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Schleswig-Holstein’s higher administrative court has overturned the so-called ban on accommodation for tourists from Corona hotspots. The court in Schleswig classified the regulation on Friday in an urgent procedure as illegal. Two hotels had sued against it. The regulation is suspended until a decision on the main issue has been made.

According to the court, this decision is generally binding, so that every person can refer to it and in future it must also be observed by courts and authorities. It is also final. The Schleswig judges followed court decisions in other federal states.

Court: Avoid serious economic disadvantages

“The decision is caused by the urgent need to ward off serious economic disadvantages for the accommodation establishments in the country”, explained the OVG. This also includes the resorts or hotels operated by the two applicants in Travemünde, Grömitz and on Sylt. 

According to the current accommodation rule, tourists from areas with high corona numbers – from 50 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days – are only allowed to stay in hotels or holiday apartments in the north if they present a negative test that is no more than 48 hours old. According to the OVG, this violates the principle of equal treatment enshrined in the Basic Law. 

The ban on accommodation had only been introduced in a few federal states and was abolished in almost all of them. It is only still valid in Saxony-Anhalt.

RKI: Virus is currently spreading mainly in private encounters

In view of the latest findings from the Robert Koch Institute, the spread of the corona virus is increasing in private households and in private encounters. Infections in hotels are rather rare. Under these circumstances, the prohibition that applies solely to the arrival of accommodation guests for tourist purposes turns out to be an unjustified disadvantage compared to those who come for other than tourist, but also private purposes – to visit the family, to exercise custody and access rights or to take care of vulnerable people.