Denver Newsroom, May 7, 2020 / 14:48 pm
For the first time in over a century, the annual May 13 celebrations at the Fatima shrine will take place without the physical presence of pilgrims, the bishop of Fatima confirmed this week.
Cardinal Antonio Marto said in a May 3 statement that the celebrations for the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima "will take place as was announced April 6, without the physical presence of pilgrims, in the name of prudence to avoid the risk of spreading the novel coronavirus."
"As planned in conjunction with the civil authorities, the May 12 and 13 celebrations for this year cannot have the physical presence of the pilgrims and will be transmitted by broadcast and digital media," he continued.
The cardinal explained that hosting "an unpredictable multitude of people" gathering at a time when the coronavirus pandemic is still a serious threat would go against the efforts of health authorities to gradually lift restrictions imposed to slow the spread of the virus.