COVID Safe Ash Wednesday as parishioners receive “takeaway” ashes.
As the global coronavirus pandemic continues and new variants are being found at an astonishing rate people are finding new ways to make it possible to keep traditions alive. Churches are closed due to the pandemic, but parishioners in Clonmany, Co Donegal will still be able to obtain ashes for Ash Wednesday.
Thanks to an ingenious idea, parishioners will be able to get their ashes in “takeaway form”. The ingenious idea came from the local village Centra shop’s owner Joe Joyce.
Joe said, “I would have been talking to customers, particularly the seniors, and they were talking about how this Ash Wednesday would be the first time in their lives they didn’t have ashes, and that resonated with me.” It was Joe’s resourceful idea to provide parishioners with ashes that they could take home in small containers.
Parish priest Fr Brian Brady has fully backed the idea and explained that, “It certainly seems to have met a need that the parishioners had,”
“I’m also delighted to be able to maintain a tradition that has been part of our church for 1,500 years.
“Coronavirus makes all of these things very difficult, but it would have been sad if it had been missed.”
He also spoke of the community spirit that he has witnessed and said, “It has helped people to know that we’re in this together and we need each other and the way forward is to be good neighbours and to help each other so that we’ll all come through it as a community.”
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