Easter crowds return to Jerusalem amid the launch of the Israeli vaccine

Easter crowds return to Jerusalem amid the launch of the Israeli vaccine

Jerusalem had an early Easter miracle this week – reviving religious gatherings, thanks to the launch of massive vaccination that has led to a sharp drop in COVID cases.

Thousands gathered in the streets on Good Friday in the Christian Quarter of the Old City to attend the Path of the Cross procession, as worshipers trace the last steps of Jesus before his crucifixion.

Masked shoulder to shoulder crowds were seen as men dragged a replica across the narrow lanes.

“We feel more hope that things will improve,” said the Apostolic Director, Bishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa. “The Easter message is life and love, despite all signs of death, aura and pestilence, whatever it is, we believe in the power of love and life.”

Easter Church services It was canceled last year In Jerusalem and in many parts of the world at the beginning of the pandemic.

Some sense of normalcy has returned in Israel, where more than half of the population has been vaccinated.

However, capacity restrictions remain for in-house Easter services, masks are required and foreigners still require special permission to enter the country, hampering tourism.

“It still looks like it’s not normal,” said Hagop Karakchian, the owner of a famous ceramic shop in the Old City. “The locals can party, yeah. But something is still missing.”

With mail wires

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