Knock Shrine plans to reopen for public worship
The move to reopen churches for public worship at Knock Shrine will be a welcome change for pilgrims and parishioners who, for the past number of months have only been able to participate in Masses virtually from their own homes.
The plans to reopen Knock Shrine include the facilitation of private prayer, resumption of confessions, daily Mass and a return of some other services on a restricted basis with social distancing measures and health and safety precautions in place.
Public Mass and Confessions
The Shrine will officially reopen on Tuesday 11 May for public Mass and Confessions.
From Monday to Friday, Mass will take place in the Parish Church at 12 noon, 3pm and 7.30pm (with Rosary at 7pm). Attendance will be restricted to a maximum of 50 people in the Parish Church on a first-come, first-served basis with queuing systems in place and ushers on hand to assist pilgrims.
Due to necessary maintenance works taking place throughout May, the Basilica will open at weekends-only for Mass and will be closed to the public at all other times. On Saturdays, Mass will take place at 12 noon, 3pm and 7.30pm (with Rosary at 7pm) and on Sundays at 12 noon and 3pm (with Rosary at 2.30pm).
Attendance in the Basilica will be restricted to a maximum of 200 people (first-come, first-served basis) with queuing systems in place, social distancing measures and health and safety precautions in place. From June onwards, it is planned that all Masses will take place in the Basilica in order to accommodate pilgrims.
Confessions will be available in the Chapel of Reconciliation daily from Tuesday 11th May from 11am-3pm.
The Apparition Chapel will be open for private prayer daily from 9am-9pm. Visitors to the Shrine will also be able to attend private prayer in the Parish Church at weekends.
The Bookshop and Mass Card offices in the Shrine will reopen at the later date of Monday 17 May with limited capacity and strict queuing systems in place.
Knock Counselling Centre will reopen to facilitate face-to-face appointments with social distancing measures in place. It will also continue to offer counselling sessions online.
The award-winning Knock Museum will also reopen to the public on Monday 31 May with limited capacity. The Museum offers visitors the opportunity to experience the rich and fascinating history of the shrine.
Fr Richard Gibbons, PP and Rector of the Shrine has welcomed the reopening.
“We want people to have a positive and welcoming experience during their time here. Every precaution has been made to welcome visitors back to the Shrine in a safe and controlled way. Shrine staff and ushers will be present at all of the churches and public buildings to assist with queuing systems, the wearing of face masks and social distancing. Our priority is the safety of our staff and visitors. For those who are unable to visit in person, we will continue to stream Mass daily on our website.”