President Michael D Higgins and church leaders have asked people to shine a light as a sign of support and hope for everyone afflicted by the Covid-19 virus.
Householders are asked to participate by switching on and off the lights in their home at 9pm today – Saturday, April 11th – to create a moment of solidarity.
The clergy said local cathedrals and churches across the country be filled with light instead of people this Easter, but prayers will continue to be said during the Easter Vigil celebrations, including the highly symbolic lighting of the Easter Candle.
The lighting of the candle is a proclamation that Easter has arrived, that Christ is raised from the dead, and that his light shines in the darkness and cannot be extinguished.
Bishop Fintan Gavin, Cork and Ross; Bishop Paul Colton, Cork Cloyne and Ross, as well as Bishop William Crean of Cloyne Diocese, said this spirit of perpetual light will be symbolised in the turning on of the internal lights of the churches at 9pm and letting them glow until dawn.
Although the church buildings are closed, the bishops said they hope the lights shining out through the stained glass window will be ‘a sign of hope to the few people who pass by, especially the essential workers who are on duty.’