Religious leaders at St. Joseph’s College encourage the community to continue celebrating the upcoming holidays from a safe social distance.
“This week is a very special week for Jews and Christians, and the holy days being celebrated are more important than ever,” said Thomas Petriano, Ph.D., professor and chair of religious studies at the College’s two campuses.
“It is important to remember that while public celebrations are being canceled, Passover is not canceled, Good Friday is not canceled, Easter is not canceled, and the hope that these days represent is not canceled. There are ways to observe these days while social distancing.”
Jason Steidl, a religious studies lecturer at SJC Brooklyn, is focusing on remembering hope this week, as he prepares to recognize Easter distanced from his family. He plans to sit in on a virtual mass, sing some of his favorite childhood hymns and cook foods he normally eats on Easter with his family — including pickled eggs.
“The central message of Christianity, and other religions, is that there’s always hope,” he said.
Ways to Recognize Religious Holidays While Social Distancing:
Religious leaders from SJC Brooklyn and SJC Long Island came together this week to offer some ideas about ways to celebrate the upcoming religious holidays while social distancing.
- Sit in on a live stream of a service
Many synagogues and churches are live-streaming their services on Facebook and YouTube for remote viewing. To get ideas for other religious rituals, try visiting ritualwell.org (Passover) or Aletheia.org (Easter).
- Practice reflection
Take some time to reflect on those who are hurting more than you are. Think about those who are homeless, ill, hungry, or lost a job. Consider making a donation to a social services organization in your community to help those in need.
- Connect with family via Zoom or FaceTime
Use technology to stay in touch with your loved ones. Videoconferencing tools, such as Zoom and FaceTime, are a great way to say a prayer with your family from a safe social distance.
- Explore free resources online
Father Michael Callaghan, pastor at The Oratory Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Brooklyn, and Erica Tighe Campbell, founder of Be a Heart Design, created a free resource containing daily ideas to recognize “Holy Week At Home.” Download it here.