Some Dioceses in Japan have put Masses on hold for several weeks due to the ongoing coronavirus which has become prevalent across the country.
A policy in line with secular precautions being taken by the Japanese government saw the Archdiocese of Tokyo canceling all public Masses for more than two weeks in order to prevent the spread of the virus until March 14th in the Tokyo area.
An official statement from the outfit of Archbishop Kikuchi of Tokyo said, “It was pointed out that with the rate of the spread of infections at this time, the next two weeks are crucial for the prevention of outbreaks, thus recommending to refrain from holding gatherings with an unspecified number of people.”
“For March 1 and 8, all the faithful in the Archdiocese of Tokyo will be exempted from their obligations to attend Sunday Mass,” said Archbishop Kikuchi. “I recommend everyone to find time to read the Bible and offer prayers. We are looking at the possibility of broadcasting the Mass via the internet, and [in such cases], I encourage participation by viewing the live Mass in the act of spiritual communion”, the release also added.
Weekday masses have also been canceled with a further call on the faithful to refrain from personal gathering and interactions that could heighten the outbreak
More than 1,000 people by far in Japan have contracted the virus with 12 people reported as of March 4, to have died from the outbreak.