Coronavirus: Christians pray from home on Good Friday
Kolkata, Apr 10: Amidst the lockdown in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Good Friday was marked by an absence of worshippers in churches but the address of clergymen was livestreamed on social media platforms.
Before his customary address, Archbishop Thomas D'Souza of the Archdiocese of Kolkata, paid tribute to nurses, and medical practitioners for their service during the coronavirus outbreak. Maintaining that people are standing by the distressed at this critical junture, he said, "When the coronavirus has spread fear, we can see generosity among people at this hour."
Pointing out that essential service staff and citizens have set on a mission to serve the needy at this hour, he said, "Listen to the Almighty. Love humans as Jesus said. It is a life giving pledge that sets us on a mission."
The address of Father D'Souza was streamed live from the Archbishop's House, and viewed by 12,000 people. Bishop Paritosh Canning of the Diocese of Kolkata (Church of North India) held Good Friday service from the 'Bishop's House' which was streamed live to members of the community. The bishop also urged them to come to the aid of the poor and elderly.
A CNI spokesman said, services had never been live- streamed in this fashion, as the situation did not warrant so. Principal of St Xavier's College, Rev. Father Dominic Savio said, the institute distributed food among poor while maintaining distancing norms.
The Good Friday prayer service was held in the church inside St. Xavier's College compound and the faithfuls were asked to pray from home, Father Savio said. Benjamin, a student living in central Kolkata, said, "My family prayed together at home during the online mass. We plan to do the same on Sunday." The Holy Week started on April 5 and will end on April 12. Amyt Dutta, another member of the community thanked Bishop Canning for his address. "It made us aware of our responsibilities," he said in a post.