Greek state broadcaster ERT invited a spiritual authority to give answers to commoners’ crucial and practical contemporary questions: is there any coronavirus contamination risk during the Holy Communion?
There is no problem between the coronavirus and the Holy Communion “because Christ had never been a germs carrier,” priest Stylianos Karpathiou taught the panicked faithful, two days after the first four people were tested positive in Greece.
Father Stylianos priest also sharply criticized those questioning whether the tiny spoon with which dozens or hundreds mouths share the blessed wine every Sunday could be a tool for mass contamination with coronavirus.
Critics “who try to use epidemics to attack our religion,” was father Stylianos’ convincing argument.
He stressed that the [possible] ban on congregations (in cinemas, theaters and churches) would not be implemented in churches because the Christians soldiers would defy it.
“Nobody can prevent anyone from going to church” because “only if they deploy tanks in front of churches we will not go there.”
Πόσο πιο χαμηλά; pic.twitter.com/NTJMV4Xj7n
— Tassos Morfis (@TassosMorfis) February 28, 2020
When a woman posted on the ERT FB page a comment asking how the Greek Orthodox rituals like kissing icons or share the Holy Communion comply with the coronavirus hygiene protocol, father Stylianos had a prompt answer:
“In any case, this lady neither kisses icons nor takes the Holy Communion, in our church, in our faith we do not interpret things with the logic.”
Apparently not all Greek Orthodox high-ranking clergy share father Stylianos’ views a Bishop to have posted on a religious issues website ekklisiaonline instructions for protections from coronavirus inside the church.
Among other, instructions restrict contacts between the clergy and the congregation as much as possible. All faithful should wear face masks in the church, refrain from kissing the clergy’s hands and also do not take the blessed piece of bread “antidoro” from another person, just directly from the tray as they leave the church.
And most important: The faithful should no kiss the icons, just bow in respect in front of them.