2020 Vatican Message on Occasion of Vesak

Jesus - Buddha

In a message for the Buddhist feast of Vesak, the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue invites Buddhists and Christians to promote a culture of compassion and fraternity. The Pontifical Council also gives a prayer for coronavirus, that all live with this difficult moment with hope, compassion, and charity.

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British public turn to prayer as one in four tune in to religious services

Vicar of DibleyA quarter of adults in the UK have watched or listened to a religious service since the coronavirus lockdown began, and one in 20 have started praying during the crisis, according to a new survey. Dawn French reprised her role as the Vicar of Dibley for the BBC’s Big Night in – encouraging people to “praise the Lord and praise the NHS”.

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Googling Prayer during Covid-19

Praying with the BibleIn times of crisis, humans have a tendency to turn to religion for comfort and explanation. The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic is no exception. Daily data on Google searches for 95 countries demonstrates that the COVID 19 crisis has increased Google searches for prayer (relative to all Google searches) to the highest level ever recorded. This rise amounts to 50% of the previous level of prayer searches or a quarter of the fall in Google searches for flights, which dropped dramatically due to the closure of most international air transport. Prayer searches rose at all levels of economic status, inequality, and insecurity, but not for the 20% least religious countries. The increase is not merely a substitute for services in the physical churches that closed down to limit the spread of the virus. Instead, the rise is due to an intensified demand for religion: We pray to cope with adversity.
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Ramadan Focuses Debates on How Religious Practices are Affected by the COVID-19 Crisis

muslim child with face maskDebates began even before the start of Ramadan, and they continue, about how standard practices and especially prayer are affected during the holy month. Al-Jazeera has reported that scholars have generally agreed that Friday prayers should be conducted from home; this has happened as mosques have closed around the world in the past two months.

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