Mumbai: For the first time, Christians across the world will observe Good Friday, the most significant day of mourning in the faith, not in the solemn confines of their church, but at home.
Every year, on this day, they congregate for the eucharist in churches, fasting and abstaining from luxury, to observe the death of Jesus Christ. However, this year, the world is in the midst of a lockdown necessitated by the coronavirus pandemic.
Members of the Christian community in Mumbai will be able to access religious services online via YouTube. The Archdiocese of Bombay, the apex body for the Roman Catholic church in Mumbai, released information about online services for the public through its YouTube channel.
"The live streaming of the Good Friday service at the Cathedral of Holy Name, Colaba, by Cardinal Oswald Gracias will be broadcast via YouTube at 7pm on April 10, 2020." Members of the Christian community expressed the need to stay united during this crucial time.
Juliet Rozario, a resident of Andheri, said, "It is rather unfortunate that we cannot gather as one large community and observe the most significant day of the Christian faith. But we need to realise the ground situation, understand the battle being waged by the whole world against this virus and extend a helping hand to those in need."
Doctors, nurses, medical staff, police, government leaders, journalists and those working on the frontline need our prayers and support during this time, claimed Malcolm Dias, a resident of Bandra. Dias said, "This pandemic has restricted the movement of people, as there is a risk of spreading the virus.
But there are many doctors, nurses, medical staff, ambulance services of hospitals, police on the streets, government leaders trying to implement schemes, voluntary organisations providing on-ground relief and media personnel on the field keeping us informed during this tough time. We need to pray for their well-being, as they are risking their lives every day."
Christians and believers in parts of Europe and the United States of America (USA) prayed for this pandemic to end soon. Vito Longa, a volunteer from Italy, said, "We have been fighting this pandemic since a month.
We hope this lockdown will end soon." While Roster Ferrao, a youth in New York City (NYC), said, "I have never seen the streets of NYC so empty during the season of Lent. This pandemic has compelled all of us to stay indoors."