Worshipping God While Social Distancing

Virtual church and synagogue services for Easter and Passover

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PAULA MADERO

While patrons cannot attend Easter services in person, churches like St. Paul the Apostle are livestreaming them instead.

By JILL RICE, Copy Editor

In this holy season of Passover and Easter, many worshippers are experiencing their services in a new way this year: online. Although the president was hoping they would be able to gather together by this Sunday, that will not happen. Social distancing is still in effect across the country, and some states, including New York, are likely to experience their peak levels of infection sometime this week. 

While stuck at home, it is still possible for people to celebrate Easter and Passover. Many churches and synagogues are offering livestreams of their services, from the Vatican to local temples. New York houses of worship are also helping their constituents to participate in rituals without traveling by providing online services. 

All events are in Eastern Time unless otherwise noted.

Catholic Churches

St. Paul the Apostle (Columbus Avenue and West 60th Street): Holy Thursday Mass at 7 p.m., Saturday Easter Vigil Mass at 8 p.m., Easter Sunday Mass at 10 a.m.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral (Fifth Avenue between 50th and 51st Streets): Holy Thursday Mass at 5:30 p.m., Saturday Easter Vigil Mass at 8 p.m., Easter Sunday Mass at 10 a.m.

St. Peter’s Basilica (Vatican City, in Italian): Pope Francis celebrates Holy Thursday Mass at 6 p.m. (12 noon ET), Saturday Easter Vigil Mass at 9 p.m. (3 p.m. ET), Easter Sunday Mass at 11 a.m. (5 a.m. ET)

Latin Patriarchate Co-Cathedral (Jerusalem, in Arabic): Holy Thursday Mass at 5:30 p.m. (10:30 a.m. ET), Saturday Easter Vigil Mass at 8 p.m. (1 p.m. ET), Easter Sunday Mass at 11:30 a.m. (4:30 a.m. ET)

Christian Churches

Hillsong Church (Broadway and West 176th Street): Good Friday Service at 7 p.m., Easter Sunday Services at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. 

Hope Church (West 86th Street and Central Park West): Sunday Service at 11 a.m.

Trinity Church (Broadway and Wall Street): Maundy Thursday at 6 p.m., Saturday Great Vigil of Easter at 7:30 p.m., Easter Sunday Eucharist at 11:15 a.m.

Westminster Abbey (London): In lieu of services, the Abbey is offering Sunday podcasts from their clergy and musicians.

Jewish Synagogues

B’nai Jeshurun (West 88th Street and Broadway): Havdalah and Counting the Omer: Saturday, April 11, at 8:18 p.m. (events continue throughout Passover via Zoom); Pesah Day Eight Service: Thursday, April 16, at 10 a.m.

Stephen Wise Free Synagogue (West 68th Street and Central Park West): Second-Night Zoom Community Passover Seder: Thursday, April 9, at 6 p.m.; Yom Tov Passover Service with Yizkor: Wednesday, April 15, at 10 a.m.

Central Synagogue (Lexington Avenue and East 55th Street): Passover First Day Worship: Thursday, April 9, at 9:30 a.m., Passover Seventh Day Worship: Wednesday, April 15, at 10:30 a.m.

Western Wall (Jerusalem) cameras go live April 10 at 7:30 p.m. (12:30 a.m. ET) for Maariv service.

No matter which religious service you attend, these organizations have sought to provide the faithful with options for communal prayer at home. These houses of worship will be opened to the public again at some point, but in the meantime, their patrons can still maintain a semblance of normalcy during this less-than-normal holiday season with these live videos.