ASIA/BANGLADESH - Cardinal D’Rozario to the faithful: return to mass

Friday, 10 July 2020 coronavirus   mass   mass media   healthcare   local churches  

Dhaka (Agenzia Fides) - "We must take preventive measures and go back to church. Holy mass and the Eucharist are the best way to be united with Jesus Christ. Following an online mass does not have the same effect as the Holy Mass that physical participation in the liturgy can give. For the sick and for those physically impaired, online mass is perfect; but now the people of God can and must participate in the Eucharist in presence, in the church": said Cardinal Patrick D'Rozario, Archbishop of Dhaka and president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Bangladesh (CBCB), addressing the faithful and inviting them to overcome the fear of the coronavirus. After a period of lockdown, the faithful are authorized, in compliance with the distancing and protection measures, to participate in religious gatherings. However, Fides learns from the local Church that less than 20% of Catholics attend Sunday mass, because they fear the coronavirus contagion.
Cardinal Patrick invited the faithful to follow the guidelines given by the civil authorities to contain the coronavirus, "to protect our lives and those of others", urging us to move forward in everyday life and activity, respecting the necessary measures. But he warned: "in order to maintain social distancing, we are moving away from human relationships, and this is not good".
The Cardinal quoted the Gospel passage in which Jesus says: "Come to me, all of you who are fatigued and oppressed, and I will give you rest", recalling that "Jesus Christ gives comfort while we are going through the coronavirus crisis".
The Archbishop recalled that "the human being has realized how weak and helpless he is during the coronavirus pandemic": "We are defenseless. We realized that we were taken by frustration and despair in this period. In this difficult moment, we have heard from the Gospel that Christ Jesus invites us to go to him to find relief. Therefore let us follow his path". The Cardinal praised the fact that, during the pandemic, "every house became a place of worship. Members of Christian families practiced the grace, mercy, love and forgiveness of God. Also thanks to prayer, many sick people have recovered at home and in the hospital. In the most difficult moments, we have received God's blessing. So we can say: praise be to God". (FC-PA) (Agenzia Fides, 10/7/2020)