Catholic bishops have announced some changes in how the mass celebrations will be conducted following the confirmed case of coronavirus in Kenya.
In a press statement by the Kenya Conference of Catholic bishops released on Friday, March 14, they outlined ways they would curb the incidental spread of the virus.
The bishops advocated that Catholic faithful who were suffering from a cold should deliberately stay home until they recovered.
A tourist is screened for Coronavirus at the Port of Mombasa on February 13, 2020
“We encourage any person who suffers from a cold to voluntarily abstain from the Holy Mass celebrations until they recover,” read the statement in part.
“Common good dictates that should anyone suffer a flu, that they go to the health facilities to monitor and be able to catch any incidental infection on time,” the bishops advised.
Further, they advocated for priests to observe the highest level of hygiene while conducting the ceremonies.
“Specifically, we ask them to thoroughly wash their hands with soap and water before any liturgical celebration, and use soap in the lavabo rite of the mass to ensure total cleanliness as they come in contact with bread and wine,” the statement read.
In addition, they also stated that strict measures should be followed before carrying out any assistance in the altar by the servers and any extraordinary ministers who come into contact with the bread and wine.
Some of the other pointers given by the bishops include; Christians would receive Eucharist on the hand and not mouth, Christians should follow the indications of prevention of spread given by health authorities, there would be a temporary removal of Holy Water from the water fonts and hand greetings should be minimised to waving.
In conclusion, the bishops warned against the discrimination and stigmatization of the affected persons.
Other churches that have also put strict measures include; Shrine of Mary Help of Christians, Upper Hill, Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Lavington, Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church, Ridgeways and Redeemed Christian Church of God.
A catholic mass in progress