How Ukrainian churches in the United States conduct holiday services in quarantine
US churches celebrate Palm Sunday in various ways during a pandemic. Most of them conduct online services, writes "Voice of America".
The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in Washington, DC, which adheres to the Gregorian calendar, held divine services and consecration of branches on Palm Sunday through Facebook on April 4.
On April 5, the head of the UGCC in the United States, Boris Guzyak, addressed believers from an empty church with a special blessing and prayer during an outbreak of coronavirus.
Persha science: fear of death and life
Posted by Borys gudziak on Sunday, April 5, 2020
The UGCC Church in Maryland, near the capital of Washington, conducts services through Youtube.
In a weekly newsletter, priest Alexander Dumenko wrote to believers that during the outbreak of the coronavirus, the church does not conduct public services because of the need for social distance between people.
On Palm Sunday, which this church celebrates on April 12, the priest intends to leave the consecrated branches on the street, and believers will pick them up at their convenience, this is stated on the church’s website.
Ukrainian Orthodox churches in the United States conduct online services who have this opportunity. The office of the Archbishop of the UOC in the United States sent instructions for priests to consecrate branches on Palm Sunday, as the tradition of the feast of the Entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem envisages.
These consecrated branches will remain in the churches until worship with people in the church is restored. On the very first Sunday after quarantine before the Liturgy, priests will distribute blessed branches to believers.
Here's what an online worship service looks like in a U.S. Ukrainian Orthodox Church without parishioners:
The Divine Liturgy of the 5th Sunday of the Holy-Great Lent Divine Liturgy at 5 Week of Great Lent
Posted by Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA on Sunday, April 5, 2020
In American diocesia in Orlando, Florida, Palm Sunday was celebrated via YouTube.
Mount Dora Church (central Florida) held a service in the parking lot of a large supermarket. Believers came there in their own cars and did not go outside during the service. They watched the service through the glass and listened through a special radio.
In the United States, religious activity is considered “substantial” and is permitted even during quarantine. However, people must follow directions on social distance and hygiene.
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