Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox Church announces gradual reopening measures from Monday

Masses will be held throughout the week, except on Fridays

  
An Egyptian Coptic woman prays and lights a candle in front of a portrait of the Virgin Mary at the Orthodox church in Cairo, Egypt, July 5, 2019.

An Egyptian Coptic woman prays and lights a candle in front of a portrait of the Virgin Mary at the Orthodox church in Cairo, Egypt, July 5, 2019.

Reuters/Hayam Adel

Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox Church announced, on Saturday, that orthodox churches in Cairo and Alexandria are set to partially reopen on 3 August. The church noted that places of worship will gradually reopen to worshipers with precautionary measures in place, following nationwide closures that have lasted for about five months due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

In a statement on its official social media pages, the Church has said that the partial reopening will include certain measures in place regarding masses, festive prayers and funerals. This includes no more than one person being allowed per pew, with each church to commit to all the precautions as outlined by Egypt’s Ministry of Health.

Masses will be held throughout the week, except on Fridays, with funeral prayers for victims of the coronavirus infection to be held at the place of burial.

The reopening will continue gradually during the coming weeks in case the number of infections continues to decrease, according to the statement. 

The Orthodox Mass of the Feast of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, which took place on 12 July, was excluded from the previous nationwide closure of churches, with a limit of only 25 worshippers allowed to attend.

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