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Friday, 18 June 2021

Beni Suef diocese first to fully suspend Holy Week prayers over Covid concerns

The move makes the Beni Suef Diocese the first to fully suspend prayers and services through the Holy Week that starts with Palm Sunday and ends on Easter Sunday

MENA , Sunday 18 Apr 2021
Beni Suef diocese
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Bishop Gabriel, head of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of Beni Suef and Bahnasa, decided to suspend all prayers at the Diocese churches for three weeks over coronavirus outbreak concerns.

The decision came into force as of Saturday.

In a statement, the Beni Suef Diocese apologised for not holding any official or public celebrations on the occasion of Easter to preserve the safety of all churchgoers and clergymen.

The move makes the Beni Suef Diocese the first to fully suspend prayers and services through the Holy Week that starts with Palm Sunday and ends on Easter Sunday. 

This year, the Holy Week begins on 25 April and ends with Easter on the evening of 1 May.

The Beni Suef Diocese statement said the diocese did not allow holding masses to mark these holy occasions in the presence of priests and deacons as other dioceses did but decided that priests, deacons and worshippers perform the prayers inside their homes.

Pope Tawadros II has given archbishops and bishops the freedom to take decisions they deem appropriate for holding services and prayers inside their places of worship in light of the epidemiological situation in each area.

Any suspension decision should be taken in agreement between the bishop of the diocese and the congregation of the priests of the diocese. 

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