Praying in a pandemic: Communal worship hard to resist for some

in Philippines

A priest at Saint Joseph Church walks along the empty nave during Sunday mass after prayers were suspended over concerns about the spread of coronavirus in Dakar, Senegal [Sylvain Cherkaoui/ReutersM

For Samuel Heilman, a visit to his local synagogue – in New Rochelle, New York in the United States – has long been part of his daily routine.

As an Orthodox Jew, Heilman considers the synagogue more than just his place of worship. It’s also a house of assembly and a house of study.  

As nations across the world implement social distancing measures, ban large gatherings and close all non-essential businesses and places to slow the spread of the COVID-19 disease, Heilman is among the millions of worshippers who can no longer visit religious sites or participate in communal prayer. 


A 73-year-old distinguished professor of sociology and Jewish studies at Queens College, City University of New York, Heilman spoke to

Read More:

Photo Credit: Aljazeera

Al Jazeera is an independent news organization funded in part by the Qatari government. In 2006 Al Jazeera Satellite Network was changed to a public utility, private corporation by a public memorandum and articles of association in accordance with the provisions of (Qatar) Law No. 21 of 2006, and was re-named “Al Jazeera Media Network”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.