The Pope Francisco The rites of Holy Week began this Thursday with a morning mass in the Basilica of Saint Peter in the Vatican. But, he renounced the traditional foot washing on Holy Thursday.
For the second consecutive year, all the acts that commemorate the death of Jesus on the cross will be celebrated within the walls of the Vatican due to the pandemic of coronavirus and without the presence of crowds of faithful as in the past.
Francisco In addition, he will not attend the commemoration on the afternoon of Holy Thursday in the Roman Basilica of San Juan that commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus with his apostles and the ceremony was in charge of the dean of the College of Cardinals, the Italian Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re.
The Pope Francisco, 84 years old and who frequently suffers from painful sciatica, which makes him walk with difficulty, chose not to participate in this symbolic act.
In other years, the Argentine pontiff commemorated Holy Thursday in a prison and in a refugee center, and washed the feet of detainees and immigrants, including of Muslim religion, as a message of humility and tolerance.
Pope Francis holds the pastoral staff when he leaves at the end of a Chrism Mass inside Saint Peter’s Basilica, in the Vatican, April 1, 2021. (EFE / EPA / Andrew Medichini). (Andrew Medichini / POOL /)
Holy Week in times of pandemic
In a note, the Vatican recalls that the drama of the coronavirus pandemic has changed celebrations around the world and stresses that “like last year” it will be “omittedThis rite of foot washing due to restrictions imposed in many countries.
During the call “misa crismal“On the morning of Holy Thursday, in which the oils to be used during the sacraments are blessed, the pope spoke of the”crosses“Weighing on humanity and acknowledged that”we live in a time marked by scandals“And that they must be rejected as”a poison”.
Due to the sanitary restrictions imposed by the pandemic in Italy, the liturgical ceremonies will take place “with a limited presence of faithfuls ”in the respect of the sanitary measures foreseen, specified the Vatican.
The pontiff will preside over the Holy Friday like last year the Via Crucis from St. Peter’s Square and not around the Colosseum at night, as was the tradition.
The extraordinary and lonely image of Pope Francisco in the middle of the empty St. Peter’s Square was the emblem last year of the global tragedy unleashed by the pandemic of coronavirus, in which the leader of the 1.3 billion Catholics spoke of “the darkest houra ”before the drama of death due to COVID-19 infections.
This year, according to the director of the Vatican press office, Matteo Bruni, the Good Friday meditations have been written by a group of children “scout”From Umbria (central Italy) and the Roman Parish of the Holy Martyrs of Uganda.
The different stations will be illustrated by the drawings made by children who reside in accommodation houses in Rome and who have suffered discrimination and humiliation.
On Easter Sunday, April 4, the papa will give the traditional blessing “City and the world “ (to the city and to the world) from St. Peter’s Basilica, during which he launches a message to Catholics and goes through the conflicts that plague the world.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.
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