Church mass to go digital

Headshot of Briana Fiore
Briana FioreHarvey-Waroona Reporter
Email Briana Fiore
Harvey priest Fr Jess Navara is forced to close the catholic church.
Camera IconHarvey priest Fr Jess Navara is forced to close the catholic church.

Not even religion is immune from the impact of the deadly coronavirus pandemic which is robbing the world of its freedom.

It started with a ban on communion, snowballed to mass cancellations and then spiralled into full blown church closures.

However, Father Jess Navara at the Harvey Catholic Parish said he would not let the bans put a stop to prayer – with mass now taking a digital turn.

He is holding mass via Facebook and streaming the service to his parish community.

“We had to abide with the new Government directives and close the church,” Fr Jess said.

“It is heartbreaking seeing people around the country kneeling outside churches and praying.”

Fr Jess said the church had to make the tough decision to call off the Easter services.

“All Holy Week celebrations have been cancelled.”

“There will be no Palm Sunday, Good Friday or Easter Sunday public rituals.”

Holy Week is the biggest feast within the church’s calendar when followers recognises Jesus’ sacrifices as he dies on the cross.

Despite the shock mass closures, the Harvey priest said he was still available for people who need him.

“I’m still around, I am here and available for our sick,” he said.

Fr Jess said he was only a phone call away and wanted to comfort the parishioners and community members in this difficult time.

He said there were acts of kindness and charity surfacing every day and the community was pulling together.

“Looking out for the most vulnerable is so important, we need to continue God’s work,” he said.

Fr Jess said he was in constant communication with the Bishop and the Bunbury Diocese.

“The Bishop said that Sunday obligation to mass had been suspended so people do not have to feel guilty about missing church,” he said.

People can now tune in to the online weekend mass videos from the comfort of their own homes.

The Harvey Community Dinners, which are run through the church, have also been suspended in the coronavirus crackdown.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails