Bishop Brendan Leahy of Limerick has announced that churches across the diocese of Limerick will light up and let their bells ring out at 10pm, Saturday 11 April, heralding the Easter Vigil as a signal of hope in these difficult times.

All churches throughout the diocese will light up on Holy Saturday evening at around the same time, with the Paschal Candle lit in the Cathedral. Church lights will remain on throughout Holy Saturday night.

Bishop Leahy said, “What we have is the Easter people bringing hope, light, peace, reconciliation, healing wherever they are. This is what Christianity wants to proclaim and live. The Easter ‘Alleluia’ can be announced even when we are shrouded in darkness and difficulties because of the Covid-19 crisis.”

This initiative, he said, will be an ecumenical one, with Church of Ireland lights lit and bells also ringing, Bishop Leahy added.

The public will also be able to access a range of services both online and on community radio. All links to these can be found on the diocesan website, limerickdiocese.org.

In conclusion, Bishop Leahy said, “It’s a difficult time for us all who cherish Easter for the great celebration of hope that it is. But the light and promise of Easter is exactly what we need now. We must look beyond what’s shaping these difficult days and know that a much better one lies ahead. The Resurrection is our hope and light.

“One thing we can say for sure is that while we have never been as distanced physically, we have the ability to be closer than ever spiritually. More than ever we can join in prayer, celebrating the Risen Lord and the hope that this brings for us all.”

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