Polish Catholic Church encourages believers to celebrate Easter online

The Polish Episcopal Conference, the central organ of the Catholic Church in Poland, has informed Catholics how to use the internet during the Easter holiday to stay united and how to spread the good message of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Father Pawel Rytel-Andrianik from the Press Office of the Episcopal Conference, emphasises that social media gives us the tools we need to keep up communication and community building in the special circumstances created by the coronavirus lockdown.

The spokesperson of the Polish Episcopal Conference stated “On Good Friday, I invite you to publish pictures of the crosses we have in our homes with quotes from Scripture and to use the hashtag #Cross. On this day let us place the cross at the centre of our home, stop by it for prayer and adoration. Let us also think about our personal crosses which we carry in our own lives and ask the Lord Jesus Christ to help us carry our daily cross,” he said.

Fr Rytel-Andrianik also encouraged the faithful to post photos of Easter baskets on Saturday with the hashtag #Swieconka (the traditional Polish basket with food normally blessed with Holy Water in church by a local priest on Easter Saturday).

Fr Rytel-Andrianik stated “this year, due to sanitary rigour, there will be no traditional ritual of food sacrifice. On Easter Sunday, at the beginning of the ceremonial breakfast, the food will be blessed by a family father or another person. However, let’s not give up on preparing traditional Easter baskets with Easter eggs, especially by our youngest ones. The result can be shared with others thanks to photos and videos posted online with the hashtag #Swieconka”.

He continued by repeating the appeal of the Polish Prime Minister, saying “we know that the state authorities recommend that this year’s Easter holidays should be spent only with members of our household. But that doesn’t mean we’re not supposed to be in touch with families and friends. In addition to phone calls and instant messaging, we can send our loved ones, along with our wishes, photos and recordings of our Easter tables and those who join us at the table. Just use your smartphone. In this way, we will be able to experience the joy of Our Lord’s resurrection together. Posting our homemade material with the hashtag #Easter will create a virtual Easter table (…) Of course, this will not replace direct contact, but in this difficult situation it allows us to celebrate together, so that no one is alone at the time”.

He ended his message for the faithful by underlining the importance of remembering those who are particularly vulnerable this Easter holiday.

“During the Paschal Triduum, let us read the Holy Scriptures, especially the evangelical descriptions of the Last Supper, the Passion of Christ and the Resurrection, let us consider their depth. This is a time when, through common prayer in our closest families, we can discover the meaning of the Church and the home liturgy. Let us also remember the elderly, the lonely and the sick”.

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