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Catholic Church Adopts Measures To Fight Coronavirus

“All ministers of communion should use alcohol-based hand gels (sanitizers) before distributing communion and wash hands with soap after distribution,” Archbishop Chong said.
09 Mar 2020 09:43
Catholic Church Adopts Measures To Fight Coronavirus
Church members during Holy Communion service at the Sacred Heart Cathedral in Suva on March 8, 2020. Photo: Shreeya Verma

The Catholic church in Fiji has adopted stringent measures following the advice given by the Australian Council of Catholic Bishops on Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Archbishop Peter Loy Chong has advised parish priests and parishioners that all holy water would be removed from in front of churches until further notice.

He said holy communion would only be offered with bread and wine would be withheld.

“All ministers of communion should use alcohol-based hand gels (sanitizers) before distributing communion and wash hands with soap after distribution,” Archbishop Chong said.

He said shaking hands as a sign of peace during mass would be replaced by a respectful bow or acknowledgement.

“We recognise that the risk of contracting COVID-19 in Fiji is very low but let us not be complacent,” he said.

“At all times let us bear in mind the church’s call to ensure the protection of the most vulnerable our children, the elderly, our mothers and the sick in the community.”

Archbishop Chong said everything would be normal again once the international threat of COVID-19 ended.

Paz Tubuna, a church member of the Sacred Heart Cathedral for 12 years, said those measures were something new but a good initiative by Catholic churches.

“This is how our faith is tested. If it has changed for a reason, we have to respect the decision of our priest,” Ms Tubuna said.

Edited by Ivamere Nataro

Feedbackshreeya.verma@fijisun.com.fj



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