Priest flies with monstrance in plane to bless coronavirus-stricken land
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March 19, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Catholic priests are doing their part to heroically battle against the coronavirus, finding creative means to not only deliver the sacraments to the faithful but also to beg God for mercy and deliverance.
With the help of a pilot parishioner, Fr. Anthony Manuppella, pastor of St. Gianna Beretta Molla Parish in Northfield, New Jersey, took the Blessed Sacrament and a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary into the skies above the Diocese of Camden and prayed for God’s protection, for the sick to be healed, and for the end of this “modern day plague, the coronavirus.”
“While we’re up in the plane, with Jesus in the Holy Eucharist, the Blessed Sacrament, and a statue of our Blessed Mother, I’ll be chanting the litany of the saints because traditionally that is the prayer that we’ve said in the past when countries, especially in Europe, have been hit by the various plagues,” said Fr. Manuppella in PressofAtlanticCity.com video interview.
“After the litany of the saints, there are many, many intercessory prayers to combat the virus, to combat a pandemic, or plague if you will,” continued Fr. Manuppella. “And so I’ll be praying those and other prayers as well as we go over the whole diocese of Camden. And I’ll bless them with Jesus and pray for their protection, pray for those that are sick to be healed, and pray also for the end, the cessation, of this modern day plague, the coronavirus, because this is an invisible enemy, and so only the powers of heaven will be able to combat it, and with of course the help of doctors etc., but God is always Number One. We always turn to Him.”
“I would hope that this virus would compel people to speak and think more about returning back to God, returning back to church,” he added. “Seeing how fragile we are, and how much we need God, we could die any minute … we could be afflicted with this.”
With Masses canceled, clergy bring the Blessed Sacrament to their parishioners
Undeterred after Masses have been canceled throughout North America and Europe, priests are bringing the Blessed Sacrament to their parishioners’ homes.
Fr. Michael Hirmer, a priest in the diocese of Regensburg, Germany, processes through his town wearing a surgical mask and gloves, delivering the Eucharist to those who come out to receive communion.
“My old buddy Michael Hirmer, priest in the diocese of Regensburg, brings the holy Eucharist in procession through the village,” wrote Ulrich Lehner in a Tweet.
“The faithful are asked to come to the windows to get blessed or receive at the garden door,” noted Lehner.
My old buddy Michael Hirmer, priest in the diocese of Regensburg, brings the holy Eucharist in procession through the village. The faithful are asked to come to the windows to get blessed or receiving at the garden door. #theologie #kirche @katholisch_de https://t.co/sI0d3lZXXA pic.twitter.com/thedPWCgyD— Ulrich Lehner (@ulrichlehner) March 18, 2020
Fr. Anthony Huong Van Le, pastor of St. Catherine of Siena Church in Martinez, California, has set up a web page where people can sign up to receive communion at home after watching the parish’s Sunday live-streamed Mass.
Parishioners are advised, “Please leave your name, address, telephone number and you will be contacted prior to one of the clergy arriving at your home (wearing gloves and masks) to distribute the sacrament.”
“Carmelite priest Fr. Justin Cinnante blesses New Rochelle, New York, with the help of some friends, earlier this week,” noted Kathryn Jean Lopez in a tweet, with a video of Fr. Cinnante standing on the back of pickup truck cruising neighborhood streets.
“New Rochelle has been hit hard by coronavirus,” added Lopez.
(Last photo is people participating in Mass from a home, via livestream.) pic.twitter.com/pKevXRj5Og— Kathryn Jean Lopez (@kathrynlopez) March 19, 2020
Readers have told LifeSiteNews that priests in Massachusetts and elsewhere are leading the Stations of the Cross by conference call, and the practice of drive-thru parking lot confessions seems to be spreading like wildfire around the country.
Drive thru confessions in Gainesville, VA at Holy Trinity. pic.twitter.com/qkCxVbNGc4— Timmy Meads (@Timothy_Meads) March 18, 2020