“This Holy Week and Easter, I invite you to focus primarily upon that opportunity – “to reconcile with God and neighbour” – for this is the ultimate and primary fruit of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
“Again, this year, we cannot celebrate Holy Week and Easter as we would normally do.
“Many parishes are looking at ways of “taking Holy Week and Easter to your homes” – palm crosses, prayer books and leaflets, colouring resources for children, Easter water bottles and prayer cards – and I would ask that you join in that effort.
“If out for a walk on Easter Sunday, call and collect any resources that your parish might have available. Get the schedule for online broadcasts from the parish, have a look at the national and indeed international broadcasts too.
“Irrespective of the restrictions, we can participate in prayer, through personal reflection, openness to a better relationship with God and neighbour, we can visit our local church and engage with the opportunities and resources that our parish is providing.
“In conclusion, I would like to say a word of gratitude to the priests, the staff and the volunteers in our parishes.
“I am also acutely aware of the isolation of priests themselves and of the toll that being restricted in their ministry is taking.
“I ask that public worship resumes as soon as possible.
“I thank the hundreds of people who have made themselves available to ensure that our churches are the safest of spaces for parishioners.
“Finally, I invite you to continue purposefully on the journey through the pandemic by engaging with a high standard of hygiene, safety and adopting-afresh the mantra to “be heart, keep heart and give heart.”
“Let us look forward to meeting once again in person in our churches and parishes when possible.”