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19 Mar, 2020 13:57

Praying to prevent coronavirus! Moscow monastery introduces nightly processions to fight Covid-19

Praying to prevent coronavirus! Moscow monastery introduces nightly processions to fight Covid-19

While ordinary folk have been told to wash their hands, self-isolate, and keep social distance to fight infection, members of a Moscow religious order have opted for their own solution – nightly processions on the streets.

As first reported by news service Interfax, monks from Moscow’s Vysoko-Petrovsky Monastery have opted to circle their abode to battle coronavirus. The first procession, which occurred yesterday after the evening service, will become a nightly ritual, presumably until the virus is defeated. The abbot of the monastery, Hegumen Peter Eremeev, explained the logic on his Instagram page.

“The tradition of religious processions in the days of the disaster was established in church tradition back in Byzantium. The clergy and believers went around houses, streets, monasteries, and even entire settlements, calling on the Lord and saints to help. Today we all need help from above, so the brethren of our monastery unanimously decided to increase prayer. The Lord will not leave anyone!” he wrote.

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Led by an ancient icon of the Mother of God, the procession begins with monks splashing water on the walls of the monastery, before walking and reciting prayers – all while maintaining a safe distance, of course.

In a separate Instagram post, Hegumen Peter also announced the suspension of their excursion service, promising to provide live virtual tours on social media.

This isn’t the first action taken by a Russian Orthodox Church to fight Covid-19. On Tuesday, a Moscow archpriest noted that they were doubling the volume of communion wine as a means to kill the virus, and many other churches have taken to cleaning their icons more regularly.

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Last week, it was reported that a procession against coronavirus in Lipetsk was forced to cancel due to a rule restricting mass gatherings of people.

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