Public Health Alert: We’ll continue handshake of peace at Masses,Holy Communion to continue on tongues – Cleric

The Catholic Archbishop of Owerri, Most Rev. Anthony Obinna has said that despite the panic of the spread of Coronavirus pandemic across the world, worshippers across the Archdiocese will continue to observe the traditional handshake of peace during Masses.
The Archbishop also insisted that priests in the Archdiocese would continue giving Holy Communion to worshippers on their tongues.
In his address to the members of the Owerri Archdiocesan Pastoral Council, at the Maria Assumpta Cathedral, Archbishop Obinna said: “Since the outbreak of the coronavirus infection and its rapid spread into different countries of the world, fear and panic have gripped many people.
“In Italy particularly, Sunday and Public masses have been stopped.
“However during our bishops’ meeting in Abuja less than two weeks ago, each diocese was left to take whatever measure it considered helpful and appropriate taking into consideration the need to prevent the infection.”
The Archbishop said; “The position in Owerri Archdiocese remains what it was during the Ebola saga, namely; Keep yourself and your environment clean at home, in the office or work place and in and around the Church; wash your hands regularly and as the need arises. You may use a sanitizer; carry on clean handkerchiefs for needed cleaning of nose and mouth.
“For Holy Mass and for the reception of Holy Communion, the priests will wash their hands and communicants should brush their teeth and mouth.
“Holy Communion will continue to be given only on the tongue; the hand-shake of peace will continue to be given to those immediately near you.
There should be no going or running across to look for a partner to shake; continue to pray for God’s preventive intervention for non-infected places and persons and for God’s curative intervention for the infected and sick; trust in God – do not fear – do not panic”.

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