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Local churches hold unique Easter services amidst coronavirus outbreak

In an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19, many religious organizations have taken action into their own hands.

Posted: Apr 10, 2020 3:17 PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) In times of change, many people turn to faith.

But now, even how people can seek faith is changing. Church services across the country have almost exclusively gone online. 

“All of them will be virtual, it’s very different,”said Father Steve Hansen, the Cathedral of St. Joseph. 

In an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19, many religious organizations have taken action into their own hands. 

“The city of St. Joseph and Kansas city allows for 10 people, but our bishop has asked that we have 5 people at the services, if there is a wedding or a funeral, there can be 10,”said Father Hansen. 

State's social gathering restrictions have made for a tricky situation between church and state laws, but local religious leaders said they support the government's agenda in keeping people safe. 

“Why would the church argue with that? This is a place where we have to be united with civil authorities. If those laws are just and they’re for the common good, we always want to abide by civil authorities,”said Father Hansen. 

A local pastor said “nobody is telling us that we can’t practice our faith, they are just asking us to do it in a way that keeps everybody safe,” said Dr. David Mason, Pastor of Green Valley Baptist Church.

Because of this, churches are getting creative with how they are bringing their services to their members.

Green Valley Baptist church is holding their Easter services in their parking lot for a one time event at 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. 

“We’d like to get our folks together, so we’re going to have them gather in this parking lot. Nobody gets out of their car, nobody exchanges anything, nobody rolls down a window, no exchange once so ever. Just sit in the parking lot and receive the service,”said Pastor Mason.

Green Valley Baptist Church will be transmitting their live service through the radio.

Due to the COVID-19 concerns, the Diocese of Kansas City and St. Joseph have extended the suspension of public Masses from the previously announced date of April 3rd to now, April 24th. 

Because of the decision to suspends public Masses for the time being, the Cathedral of St. Joseph is holding their Easter online through live videos members can watch from their website or their Facebook page. 

Their live Easter Sunday Mass will begin at 10 a.m. 

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Most of today was sunny and dry with a few passing clouds. An isolated shower or two could develop late this afternoon in extreme northwest Missouri. Temperatures will continue to warm up on Wednesday with highs back in the upper 80s and lower 90s. Several rounds of showers and storms will return Thursday and Friday as a front moves through our area. A few storms could be on the stronger side or bring heavy rain. Temperatures will be back in the low to mid 80s for the weekend.
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