PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Good Friday will be observed much differently this year due to COVID-19. On Friday, Philadelphia Archbishop Nelson Perez joined Eyewitness News to talk about the church’s plans for Easter.
Q: For many this is the holiest week of the year, so it is understandably disappointing for many not being able to be at their places of worship this weekend. What message do you have for them?
“While it is certainly different, a different Holy Week, it is Holy nonetheless. What makes it Holy is the powerful story that gets retold and relived and as we once again reflect on the death and the rising of Christ, it’s a time of hope, which couldn’t come to us at a better time.”
Q: Easter Sunday is a time that is associated with renewal and new life. Right now we’re in a period when we’re seeing a lot of sadness. What’s your advice to those who may be having a difficult time right now?
“This is a time to hold on to each other, to our family, to our friends, to call them, to be in contact with social media. Of course to be in contact with the Lord through prayer and knowing that this too shall pass. We’ve been through tough times before, we’ve made it through and hopefully, we will better appreciate some things that we generally take for granted because we don’t have it as accessible this year.”
Q: What are some of the things the Philadelphia Archdiocese has put into place so that people can still participate from home this weekend.
“Parishes all over the area are streaming services. I myself will be streaming Good Friday services beginning at 3 p.m., as well as Saturday evening the Easter vigil and we’ll be streaming 11 a.m. Sunday for Easter Mass. So we’re touching lots of hearts as well, so people are being creative, working hard to explore platforms that we haven’t totally explored before but it is what the Lord has asked of us today. We are happy and joyful to be able to do that.”
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW