Church leader urges Belarus Orthodox Christians to pray at home at Easter

Pavel (Ponomaryov), Metropolitan of Minsk and Zaslauye, has called on Orthodox Christians to refrain from attending Easter services, news agency Interfax reports.

One should stay ad pray at home, the head of the Belarusian Orthodox Church said. According to him, priests will consecrate Easter cakes and eggs outside churches, in the open air.

At the same time, one must not close temples. Divine services will be chanted. We only urge those who come to church to keep the distance and take the necessary measures to avoid the spread of the virus,” the Metropolitan stressed referring to the fact that shops and drugstores are open in Belarus.

For the time being, one Orthodox priest contracted COVID-19, he added.

In late March, the Belarusian Orthodox Church announced that they would not cancel sacred processions at Easter or during other holy days even amid the coronavirus threat.

As of April 14, there have been 3,281 confirmed coronavirus cases in the country; 33 persons have died, the Belarusian Health Ministry said on Telegram.

How Minsk believers mark Easter and Palm Sunday (photos)