The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced Thursday that it will close the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul to the public during livestreamed Easter and Holy Week services as part of its “commitment … to protect public health during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The decision came after The Inquirer reported that at least two dozen people attended Sunday’s 11 a.m. Mass and were served Holy Communion, despite Archbishop Nelson J. Pérez’s order last month suspending all public Masses in an effort to curb the coronavirus’ spread.

A video of that service, shared by an attendee who asked not to be identified, showed the congregants side by side in a tight line as they waited for a priest to place Communion wafers in their hands or, in at least one case, on the tongue.

Read More…