Los Angeles Archbishop Jose H. Gomez will lead a Good Friday National Prayer of the Litany of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to ask for an end to the coronavirus pandemic.
Gomez, on behalf of American bishops, will pontificate from the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels beginning at 9 a.m. via livestream. The prayer unlike any other is among the many ways the pandemic has shaped Holy Week.
"Future generations will look back on this as the long Lent of 2020, a time when disease and death suddenly darkened the whole Earth," Gomez said. "As we enter into Holy Week, these most sacred days of the year, Catholics here in Los Angeles and across the United States and the world are living under quarantine, our societies shut down by the coronavirus pandemic.
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"This Holy Week will be different. Our churches may be closed, but Christ is not quarantined and his Gospel is not in chains. Our Lord's heart remains open to every man and woman. Even though we cannot worship together, each of us can seek him in the tabernacles of our own hearts."
Pope Francis has granted a special plenary indulgence to those praying for an end to the coronavirus pandemic.
"To receive this indulgence, you need to pray the Litany of the Sacred Heart on Good Friday, be truly sorry for your sins and desire to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation as soon as it is possible and you need to pray for the intentions of the pope," Gomez said.
According to Christian teachings, Good Friday is a day when faithful around the world solemnly commemorate the day when Jesus was crucified. Catholics traditionally mark the day with fasting, penance and reflection on Jesus' sacrifice for humanity.