All churches in the St Davids diocese have been advised to stop offering communion wine until the coronavirus scare is over.

During the Church in Wales holy communion service a communal cup is used to share the wine between worshippers.

However, from last Sunday, February23, churches in the diocese have been advised by Bishop of St Davids, Joanna Penberthy, to offer just bread and not wine to communicants as a precaution against the spread of coronavirus.

Church leaders have also been advised to exclude the “peace be with you” handshake from services for the same reason.

The total number of coronavirus cases in the UK currently stands at 15, with two new cases reported today (Thursday).

In Italy there are 400 reported cases, resulting in 12 deaths.

There are now more than 80,000 reported cases world-wide in more than 40 countries.

The respiratory disease caused by the virus, Covid-19, has killed more than 2,700 people.

The majority of the deaths have been in China, where the virus started late last year.

A spokesman for the diocese of St Davids said: “This is a precaution and it is advice from the Bishop rather than an instruction. Communicants will be offered the bread but not the wine.

“The advice will remain in place until the emergency is over.”