Coronavirus: Pope livestreams Easter Sunday Mass from lockdown.
Pope Francis to break with centuries of tradition and livestream Easter Sunday mass to allow the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics celebrate their holiest holiday under coronavirus lockdown.
The pope’s messages to the devotees on Saint Peter’s Square have been replaced by prayers that he reads into a camera from the seclusion of his private library.
Francis had entered an empty Vatican square for a torch-lit Good Friday procession. It had taken place around the Roman Colosseum in the presence of at least 20,000 faithful for more than 50 years.
Rome and the rest of Italy have been living under lockdown since early March. The Vatican’s entrance has been sealed by armed police.
A handful of priests celebrated Easter today at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.
The church which had not been closed over Easter for at least a century, has been shuttered to worshipers along with all cultural sites to curb the spread of the COVID-19 respiratory disease.
A few devotees had gathered at the church’s inner courtyard, including one man in an immaculate white gown who had prayed in front of the closed door.
Israel has reported nearly 11,000 cases of COVID-19.
The total number of global cases has surpassed 1.7 million, including more than 108,000 fatalities. More than 405,000 patients are reported to have recovered. Get the latest updates from around the world:
Easter services around the world are being livestreamed