BALTIMORE (WJZ) — It wasn’t a typical Sunday for many churchgoers as churches and synagogues made the decision to cancel public services.

However, technology helped them spread their message during these uncertain times.

Archbishop William Lori said the decision wasn’t made lightly but it was necessary, and as church bells rang at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, parking lots and pews sat empty.

“We are not together physically, but we are united spiritually and we are united virtually.” a priest said in the service.

To help curb the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19, the Archdiocese of Baltimore is opting to spread its message online.

CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: 

“It seems that the best thing to do was indeed to go online certainly to make mass available, but at the same time, uppermost in our mind and heart is the desire to protect people at a time when this virus is spreading rapidly there’s still so much we do not know.” said Archbishop Lori

Archbishop Lori said the decision was made after receiving more information from the government and medical community.

“It just seemed to everybody, my whole team is that canceling mass was the best option but we reached that decision reluctantly.” Archbishop Lori said.

Some churchgoers only found out about the cancellation minutes before 11 a.m. mass on Sunday.

“It feels very strange not going to mass today.” one churchgoer said.

The Catholic Church is not the only one to cancel public service, Beth AM Synagogue held the Saturday service online.

And New Psalm Batisit, which typically draws upwards of 6,000 people at their service, switched to an online worship experience.

Sean Streicher

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