By Cian Molloy - 11 April, 2020
In a move likely to be followed by parishes across the country, the bishops of Cork have come together to ask that all churches across their country be illuminated from within as part of this year’s
The move is being orchestrated jointly by Bishop Fintan Gavin of Cork and Ross and Bishop William Crean of Cloyne, along with their Church of Ireland counterpart Bishop Paul Coloton of Cork, Cloyne and Ross.
Churches are usually filled with people to pray the Easter Vigil during which time an Easter Candle is lit in every church. It is a proclamation that Easter has arrived and that Christ is raised from the dead, say the bishops. “His light shines in the darkness and cannot be put out.”
While Easter Candles will be lit as usual this year, there will be no crowds present because of current COVID-19 restrictions, so the bishops are calling on parishes to magnify the brightness of this symbolism by keeping all church interior lights lit from 9pm onwards, until Easter Sunday morning.
The people of Cork can be sure that there will be an interior glow visible from the Cathedral of St Mary and St Anne and the Cathedral of St Fin Barre in Cork City while St Colman’s Cathedral in Cobh will be brightly lit tonight from 9pm onwards. The bishops hope that other churches follow their example.
“The lights from within churches, shining through stained glass windows, will be a sign of hope to even the few people who pass by and especially to essential workers who are on duty,” they say.
“Although our Church buildings might be closed, Christ our Light is still present and alive in so many ways as our light and hope.”