EU’s Coronavirus Christmas Rules: No Communal Singing, Televised Church Only

BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 23: Fans of the FC Union football club gather in the club'
Michele Tantussi/Getty Images

The European Commission has released a set of Christmas Wuhan coronavirus guidelines including a proposal to ban communal singing.

The Commission guidelines were released on Wednesday and included lists of “recommended actions for member states” which instruct countries to look after vulnerable people such as the disabled, the mentally ill, or homeless, as well as set criteria for small social gatherings.

The guidelines also state that EU nations should “consider not allowing any mass gatherings” and said that anyone engaged in social events during the Christmas season should be forced to self-quarantine before and after the event for a recommended seven days.

For Christmas ceremonies and services, the Commission recommends that they be done online or through radio or television broadcast and that communal singing should be banned.

“In case of ceremonies, consider avoiding large services or using online, TV or radio broadcasts, allocating specific spots for close families (‘household bubbles’) to sit together, and banning of communal singing. The use of masks is particularly relevant during these types of gatherings,” the guidelines say.

During the outbreak of the Wuhan coronavirus in March, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen attempted to keep the internal border of the bloc open while many countries enacted their own border controls.

The Christmas regulations state that “any measures restricting free movement to protect public health must be proportionate and non-discriminatory, and must be lifted as soon as the epidemiological situation allows”.

“Whilst travel itself is a risk factor, the generalised widespread transmission of COVID-19 across the Member States means that at present, intra-EU cross-border travel does not present a significant added risk,” the guideline adds.

The Commission also acknowledges what it calls “pandemic fatigue” among the citizens of member states and said at least 60 per cent of countries are experiencing some form of fatigue with people becoming tired of lockdowns, social distancing, and economic restrictions.

Many countries have announced various measures over the Christmas period, with some, such as the UK, saying that lockdown measures would be eased for five days to allow people to celebrate Christmas with their families, but potentially at the cost of another lockdown.

The interior minister of Belgium, meanwhile, told citizens to expect knocks on doors from police on Christmas if they were suspected of violating lockdown measures.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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