“Too sad to celebrate Mass in front of the empty pews.”
With all public events and religious ceremonies forbidden in Coronavirus-hit Italy, one parish priest has taken a novel approach to repopulate his church.
Don Giuseppe Corbari, from the small town Robbiano di Giussano in Lombardy – a region devastated by the Coronavirus – made an unexpected appeal to his parishioners last week after his sadness at celebrating Sunday Mass without seeing their faces before him.
“Send me photographs of yourselves, of you and your family, the photo of your face, I need to see faces in front of me when I celebrate Mass next Sunday” – Don Giuseppe appealled – “I will print the photo you send me and I will stick it with sellotape on the pew: it is a way to make me feel less alone.”
The priest added: “Obviously I will put the children in the front benches, the altar boys on the altar, and all the adults in the other places.”Don Giuseppe said that his appeal was so well heeded that his printer ran out of toner and, after the priest’s sadness the week before, this Sunday the little church in Robbiano was once again full of smiling faces.