Religious News From Around the Web March 30, 2020

Hopeful Coronavirus News, Online Passover and Baptisms, Medical Masks Discovered in Crypt, Patron Saint of Epidemic Resistance, 12 Beautiful Jain Temples, Muslim and Jewish Paramedics Pray Together, Sikhs Help New Yorkers

Religious Ceremonies, Rituals Go Online
Christening Image by Jercy Rhea Senecio from PixabaySheltering in place and social distancing have hammered social and religious gatherings and events, but a number of online group meeting apps – such as Google Hangouts, Zoom, Onstream Meetings, and others – have stepped in to replace in-person meetings with their virtual cousins. Even though use of electricity is not allowed under Orthodox Jewish practice during Shabbat, rabbis approved the use of Zoom, a computer meeting application to bring families together during Passover Seder And Christian baptism may also be coming to a computer screen near you.

Hopeful News for Coronavirus Patients
Israel recently announced the development of a coronavirus vaccine. In addition, the U.S. FDA has allowed limited trials infusing blood plasma into current patients from patients who have recovered from the Coronavirus and whose plasma contains antibodies to the virus. Only one Chinese study of 10 patients has been conducted, but there are signs that the treatment may be useful.

Falwell’s Liberty University Reopens During Pandemic
Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., reopened during the coronavirus pandemic, admitting some 1,900 students to campus, saying it was safer for them to be in school than out in the community. The move aroused critics who say it is unsafe and puts students at risk.

National Cathedral Donates 5,000 Medical Masks Found in Crypt
Five thousand N95 medical masks — purchased in 2006 during the H5NI bird flu virus threat and stored in the crypt area of Washington’s National Cathedral – have been recovered and donated to Washington-area hospitals. The masks had reached their expiration date, but the need was so critical the masks were deemed OK and were immediately put into service.

Cathedral Dusts off Patron Saint of Epidemics

Aachen Cathedral By Christian Wehrle - Own work, CC
Aachen Cathedral
By Christian Wehrle – Own work, CC
Saint Corona, a 16-year old Christian martyr killed by the Romans around 1,800 years ago, is the patron saint of resisting epidemics and has attracted interest during the coronavirus pandemic. Aachen Cathedral in Germany has some of the Saint’s relics which will be dusted off and put on display this summer.

Religious Sources on Coronavirus Prevention
A number of faiths have provided information and suggestions online on how best to avoid the coronavirus. Here are a selection:
Jewish, Scientology, Hindu, Catholic, Buddhist, Islam.

Photos: 12 Beautiful Indian Jain Temples

Sri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir, Delhi, Photo by Pratyk321 - Own work, CC
Sri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir, Delhi, Photo
by Pratyk321 – Own work, CC
Indian Jain temples have wonderful architecture, beauty, serenity, and history. Here are 12 examples in photos.

Sikhs Pack 30,000 meals for Homebound New Yorkers
The Sikh Center of New York prepared more than 30,000 meals for Americans in self-isolation in response to the mayor’s request. The food was prepared using all protective measures. Sikhs have stepped up with food and prepared meals in many parts of the world recently.

Muslim and Jewish Paramedics Pray Together
Avraham Mintz and Zoher Abu Jama, a Jew and a Muslim working together as paramedics in Israel’s emergency response service in the Israeli city of Be’er Sheva paused between calls to pray; Avraham with his prayer shawl, Zoher kneeling on his prayer rug. A photo of the two went viral, an inspiration to those caught in a global pandemic.