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St. Peter’s Basilica stands empty.

Rome was one of the first to order such a closure, forbidding faithful from entering churches throughout the Italian capital until April 3.

By Edward Pentin, EWTN News, 3/12/20

Edward Pentin began reporting on the Pope and the Vatican with Vatican Radio before moving on to become the Rome correspondent for the National Catholic Register. …

Edward PentinFollowing a directive issued by the Italian bishops’ conference, the Cardinal Vicar of Rome issued a decree this evening ordering all churches in the capital to be closed to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

In a statement, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis said that access to parish and non-parish churches as well as any places of worship open to the public “are forbidden to all the faithful” until Friday, April 3.

He added that monasteries and other religious houses would continue to be accessible but only to those communities that live there, and that faithful who are not stable members of those communities are forbidden from entering.

In view of these measures, he said the faithful are “therefore exempted” having to satisfy their Sunday obligation.  ….

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