The Christians of Jerusalem gathered in great numbers for both Good Friday and Easter Sunday, something that was prohibited just a year ago as COVID-19 first swept through the nation.
There were still capacity restrictions for indoor gatherings and church services, but it seemed no restrictions besides the wearing of masks were placed on those congregating and marching outdoors.
“It is like a miracle,” Amjad Sabbara, a local Catholic priest, told The New York Times. “We’re not doing this online. We’re seeing the people in front of us.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised that if the country’s aggressive vaccination campaign managed to inoculate enough Israelis before Passover, then everyone would be able to again celebrate together with family and friends. That benefit, of course, applied also to Israel’s Christian population.
A number of top Christian officials in Jerusalem expressed thanks for Israel’s vaccination efforts and hopes that things would soon fully return to normal in the Holy City.