The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) on Thursday issued liturgical guidelines that support earlier rules set by other dioceses to ensure the safety of the faithful amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) threat.
In Circular No. 20-06 addressed to all bishops and diocesan administrators, CBCP president Archbishop Romulo Valles reiterated the call for Catholic prelates to observe precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the deadly virus.
Among the guidelines is the non-marking of the cross on the forehead on Ash Wednesday to avoid physical contact.
“In Baptism, we have been anointed on the crown of the head. The ashes to be imposed on the crown signify our repentance from sin, which has marred the grace of Baptism. This is not an innovation but in accord with the ancient practice of the Church,” the Davao prelate added.
The CBCP also discouraged the public from kissing or touching the cross for veneration. Instead, the faithful are requested to genuflect or make a profound bow as they venerate the cross. PNA