Source: Agenzia Fides – MIL OSI
Headline: ASIA/TURKEY – Covid-19, ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew: governments cannot impose rules on the celebration of the Eucharist
Istanbul – The Orthodox Churches have followed the dispositions imposed by the civil authorities of their respective Countries to combat the coronavirus pandemic, closing the churches and celebrating the divine liturgy without the participation of the faithful. But now, after the months of quarantine, and places of worship are beginning to reopen, the “authorities of this world” cannot expect to dictate ecclesial dynamics that affect the celebration of sacred mysteries, starting from the way the divine Eucharist will be distributed to the faithful. This is how Bartholomew I, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, “Primus inter pares” among the Primates of Orthodoxy warns governments and civil institutions, in a letter sent to other Patriarchs and Heads of Churches to request their opinions and define a pastoral approach shared before the controversies that arose in Countries where local political authorities claim to impose new protocols for the celebration of the sacraments and in particular for the distribution of the Eucharist, on the basis of hygienic-sanitary considerations linked to the policies to combat the Covid- 19 pandemic.