The bishops invite to a “moment of meditation” on March 25 at 7:30 p.m. If the churches remain open, no celebration can be held there. Catholic parishes broadcast digital masses.
In the face of the epidemic, it is time for all-round unity. As a sign of solidarity, the Catholic episcopate decided to ring the bells of churches in France for ten minutes, Wednesday March 25 at 7:30 p.m. “Our country with many others is going through a great ordeal. The Head of State invites us to leave aside our divisions and to live this time in fraternity “, indicates, Wednesday, a press release from the bishops of France.
Beyond the Catholic circles alone, the prelates invite the French to join their initiative. They propose to put a candle at his window, at the time when the bells will ring, to mark “His communion with the deceased, the sick and their loved ones, with all the carers and all those who make life possible in our country”.
“To all, we express our desire that our national community grow out of this ordeal. For many years now, our humanity has understood that it must radically change its way of life“Continue the bishops who question individualism, the pursuit of profit and consumerism.
“Since the beginning of the epidemic, we have been fully committed to the common effort, comments Matthieu Rouge, bishop of Nanterre (Hauts-de-Seine) and member of the permanent council of the episcopate, near Release. We never balked at the drastic measures that were taken. “
If the churches remain open, no celebration can be held there since last weekend. Thanks to the Internet, many Catholic parishes have taken initiatives such as broadcasting digital masses. “No one could have imagined that one day we would find ourselves in such a situation”, says Matthieu Rouge.
Last week, the French episcopate began a series of visits to Rome. Every five years, the bishops of the whole world go, in turn, to the Vatican to meet there in group the pope and the persons in charge of the Roman curia. The visits of the French prelates were scheduled throughout March.
But in the face of the worsening coronavirus epidemic, the program was suspended. One of the French bishops present in Rome last week, Emmanuel Delmas of the Diocese of Angers, tested positive. Since then, a third of the French bishops, who were present with him at the Vatican, have been placed in quarantine.