© Reuters. Palm Sunday marked in Jerusalem amid COVID-19 restrictions, for second yr working
By Stephen Farrell
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – In scenes very completely different from final yr, Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre was open to the general public on Palm Sunday, permitting Christians to attend mass at first of Holy Week on the positioning the place they consider Jesus was crucified and resurrected.
With greater than half the inhabitants of Israel having obtained two vaccine doses, coronavirus restrictions had been eased to permit small congregations to collect with social distancing measures in place.
The temper was celebratory as scores of Roman Catholics handed by the massive picket doorways of the church that’s the world focus of a very powerful pageant within the Christian calendar.
“Final yr was a horrible Easter, with out folks, closed doorways. This yr is a lot better, the door is open, we do not have lots of people however we really feel extra hopeful that issues will develop into higher,” the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Pierbattista Pizzaballa, advised Reuters as he emerged from the church flanked by clerics and worshippers carrying palm fronds.
“The message of Easter is life and love, regardless of all of the indicators of loss of life, corona, pandemic, no matter, we consider within the energy of affection and life,” Pizzaballa stated.
Palm Sunday commemorates the day the gospels say Jesus rode into Jerusalem and was hailed by the folks, solely to be crucified 5 days later.
This yr, Roman Catholics rejoice Easter on April 4 and Orthodox Christians practically a month later, on Could 2.
Later the patriarch was anticipated to participate in a Palm Sunday procession from the Mount of Olives to the Previous Metropolis.
The procession will happen beneath Israeli COVID-19 restrictions with a restricted variety of members.
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