Serbian Orthodox Church Patriarch Irinej on April 17 called on the faithful to follow the recommendations given by experts and celebrate upcoming Easter according to the Julian calendar in their own homes.
Recalling in an interview with daily Blic that this year Easter is celebrated "in special conditions," the patriarch said that social distancing measures could be applied in churches, but added that the Serbian Orthodox Church accepted and would respect "the opinion of the people who are well-versed in the problematic and in the matter" of coronavirus infectiousness.
"Coming to a church on great feasts is nice, but this is an extraordinary moment in our lives. Better to direct one's thoughts, desires and heart toward the church than to be in a church and think about I do not know what. Of course, all this will pass, and we will pray to God in both our homes and in churches," said the patriarch.
Believers who observe the Julian calendar will celebrate Easter on April 19.
This year, Serbia is celebrating the holiday in extraordinary circumstances due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Citizens are allowed to be outdoors until 5 p.m. on April 17, when a curfew will begin and last until 5 a.m. on April 21.
According to the latest data, 103 people have died from coronavirus in Serbia, while the total number of confirmed cases is 5,318.