Palm Sunday celebrations with church compound gates locked

In keeping with norms: The Fatima Matha Catholic Church is locked down and policemen walk down the path leading up to the church on Palm Sunday.

In keeping with norms: The Fatima Matha Catholic Church is locked down and policemen walk down the path leading up to the church on Palm Sunday.   | Photo Credit: H. Vibhu

Holy Week observances in coming week will also be closed to public

The faithful in Kochi celebrated Palm Sunday with the gates of church compounds locked and police personnel standing guard to prevent gatherings of more than five at any of the churches.

Palm Sunday marks the beginning of the Holy Week, the most important week in the liturgical cycle in the Christian calendar. Palm Sunday recalls the New Testament account of Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem ahead of his betrayal and death on the cross.

In a normal year, churches would be packed to capacity. But the lockdown to contain COVID-19 saw only the mass celebrants and one or two assistants in most of the churches.

Archbishop of Varapuzha Joseph Kalathiparambil celebrated the Mass at St. Francis Assisi Cathedral while Cardinal George Alencherry celebrated the mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral in the city.

The Palm Sunday Mass at CSI Immanuel Church, Broadway, was live telecast on YouTube.

Father P.J. Jacob and Father Aneesh Mathew led the services.

Palm Sunday celebrations at Malankara churches too followed the instructions issued by the State authorities and the police.

The Holy Week observances in the coming days will also be closed to the public following police instructions. Even Easter Sunday celebrations will be without the usual gathering.

In Thrissur

The Holy Week celebrations began at various churches in Thrissur on Sunday with no congregation in the wake of COVID-19 restrictions.

Archbishop Mar Andrews Thazhath held the Holy Mass with a few assistants at the Lourdes Metropolitan Cathedral in the city.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 2:49:07 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/palm-sunday-celebrations-with-church-compound-gates-locked/article31264838.ece

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