Journalist calls 3 reasons why temples cannot be quarantined
Yan Taksiur explained why believers should not be required to close temples during the coronavirus quarantine.
All the 2000 years of the Orthodox Church’s existence, Her parishioners have been trying to be law-abiding, but there are things refusing from which is tantamount to betrayal towards God for a Christian, noted journalist Yan Taksiur on the air of the First Cossack channel. He named 3 reasons why it is impossible to give up participation in Divine Liturgy and the Eucharist Sacrament because of the coronavirus.
Taksiur recalled that the Holy Synod of the UOC recommended new rules of conduct in the temple for the quarantine period, while the clergy and laity actively participate in the fight against COVID-19.
“Today some insidious commentators are trying to put the matter in such a light that the Church should make a choice between a tiny candle and the safety of one’s neighbor, between European values and, as they put it, ritual action,” the journalist noted. “No, dear friends, we are talking about a completely different choice. Today, the UOC is being led up to the idea that it is possible to ‘teleserve’ God, i.e. without coming to the temple, without visiting the House of God.”
He called 3 reasons why it is impossible to give up living participation in divine services and the Communion of the Body and Blood of Christ.
“The Church comes into its own, i.e. functions as the Church only when there is a congregation of believers. If there is no live assembly of people, then there is no Church,” the journalist called the first of these reasons and reminded the public that even the word “church” means an assembly, and the Church of Christ is a gathering of the baptized who profess Christ as God and Savior.
The second reason is that angels, saints and the Lord Himself are invisibly present at divine services, the Orthodox publicist explained. The main Sacrament of the Church is the Eucharist, during which Jesus Christ attends the faithful.
“Now, someone is trying to impose on us an idea that we must not participate in this Eucharist Meal. And even the main holiday of Christians, Easter, a meeting with the Resurrected Savior, is planned as a remote stay-home event,” said Taksiur. “They tell us to go to the store for groceries, go to the pharmacy for medicines. Isn't the meeting with God a vital need?”
The proposal to replace the presence at the service on Easter Day by viewing online broadcasts is tantamount to the proposal to get enough of just watching the food on the screen, the publicist believes.
“The proposal to sit and look at the monitor instead of having communion with the Living God seems equally absurd to us,” he emphasized. “And the third point. Christ in the Gospel directly speaks of the need to participate in the Sacrament, which He established at the Last Supper. The Lord says, ‘I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world’."
Taksiur noted that the call to terminate worship is tantamount to the call not to fulfill the will of God and to refuse Him.
“We can’t stop worshiping, because by doing so we will say to God: We don’t need You, we can do without You. And such a refusal can have much more serious consequences for Ukraine than any virus and epidemic. May it not happen to us,” the journalist concluded.
Previously, Catholic Bishop Athanasius Schneider also opposed placing temples under quarantine. He emphasized that if supermarkets are open, then temples should also remain open.