- Mar 6, 2021
Don’t expect any palms this Passion Sunday. And distribution of palms later in the year might not happen, either, according to Rita Thiron, executive director of the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions.
The global pandemic is upending the season’s major religious holidays, forcing leaders and practitioners across the spectrum to improvise. They’re having to finding new ways to live out their beliefs in a time of social distancing and empty houses of worship.
As Catholics dutifully sit at home, doing their part to protect vulnerable people from COVID-19, the Holy Spirit has been busy inspiring creative ways to minister in the Archdiocese of Louisville and around the world.
On Friday the Vatican published the official schedule for Pope Francis’s Holy Week liturgies, which will all be livestreamed from St. Peter’s Basilica without faithful due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
The Vatican has asked Catholic bishops around the world, both in the Latin rite and the Eastern Catholic Churches, to provide their faithful with resources to support personal and family prayer during Holy Week and at Easter, especially where COVID-19 restrictions prevent them from going to church.
While conferences and meetings can be postponed for months because of the coronavirus pandemic, the liturgies of Holy Week and Easter cannot, with the exception of the chrism Mass, said the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments.
With the prospect of trying to celebrate Easter without a large parish or Vatican liturgies, Catholics still can turn a tragic situation into an experience of faith and hope, said Cardinal Beniamino Stella.
Since the Catholic Church is sui generis, the coronavirus scare is having some unique implications for ecclesiastical life.