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Photo by Mateus Campos Felipe on Unsplash

What could have been a golden opportunity to preach the Gospel in the midst of suffering has instead brought aggressive church restrictions and flippant liturgical practices.

By Edward Pentin, EWTN News, 7/31/20

In recent days I visited a number of churches in Italy and the alpine regions of Germany and Austria and was especially struck by how detrimental the reaction to the coronavirus pandemic had been to worship.

Whereas most public places had become fairly relaxed about precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 — few people, for example, wore masks even in supermarkets and on public transport — when it came to churches, measures were strictly enforced.

Most noticeable was that in every church I visited, Communion in the hand was obligatory and vigorously applied, even though its efficacy in terms of providing better hygiene is questionable and, more importantly, various prelates and clergy including Cardinal Robert Sarah have considered Communion in the hand — only ever meant to be a rare exception — to be sacrilegious.  …

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