By Kostas Onisenko
The Russian Church intervened without substantial decisions on the issue of protecting the population from the coronavirus. In an interview, Metropolitan Hilarion, head of the Moscow Patriarchate department for external church relations (DECR), advised the elderly not to visit the temples on Christmas, which is celebrated on January 7, but to watch the service via TV broadcasts.
“We do not recommend to our elderly believers living in Moscow and other parts of the Russian Federation to visit the temples, but we recommend that they watch the service via live broadcasts,” said Metropolitan Hilarion.
Metropolitan Hilarion said that in most parts of Russia there are no restrictions on the operation and visits to the temples due to the pandemic.
He also stated that it is possible for priests to visit homes for the elderly believers who cannot come to the temples.
According to recent data, Russia is the country with the third-largest number of COVID-19 cases.