VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis celebrated Easter Mass for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and offered the "Urbi et Orbi" blessing from St Peter's Basilica on Sunday. The services took place in a smaller circle because of the anti-coronavirus restrictions in place and as a preventative measure against infection, dpa news agency reported.
Before the pandemic, Easter Mass was usually held in St Peter's Square in front of tens of thousands of pilgrims. With the morning Mass on Sunday at 10 a.m., Francis celebrated it in St Peter's Basilica, as he did last year.
Easter is the most important feast of the year for devout Christians. The week leading up to Easter Sunday includes many different services that mark the final days of Jesus' life before his crucifixion. Already on the previous days, only between 100 and 200 faithful were admitted to the services.
With the "Urbi et Orbi" (To the city and the world) blessing, the Pope remits for the faithful the punishment for their sins if they have already redeemed them beforehand, for example in confession or through prayer. The blessing is usually given at Easter and Christmas and when a new Pope is elected. (IANS)