PARADIGME ÎN SCHIMBARE: ETICĂ ȘI LIBERTATE LITURGICĂ ÎN VREME DE PANDEMIE
Changing Paradigms: Ethics and Liturgical Freedom in a Time of Pandemic
Most people would agree that the Covid-19 pandemic turned the world upside down, causing irreversible mutations and transformations. World governments have been forced to put in place new laws in order to limit the spread of SARS-CoV-2. Due to restrictions and limitations, the economic, cultural, educational, and social systems took on the challenge of finding new ways of expression. These effects were also felt by the various denominations in Romania. They were forced to close their houses of prayer or to find new ways of fulfilling their mission. In this context, the Romanian Orthodox Church was strongly affected by governmental restrictions interfering with its liturgical practices. The Government gave up its position of neutrality and intervened proactively in liturgical practices that define the identity of the Romanian Orthodox Church. Regardless of its ethical implications, the legislative interventionism of the Government in the liturgical practices of the Romanian Orthodox Church led to irritation and a variety of reactions, the only reality one can notice being that the leadership of the Church has neither the courage to adopt new solution, nor the decisiveness to confront the State, both directions being mere individual initiatives. The ethical solutions we propose to the most controversial liturgical problems—the common Communion Spoon and the live broadcast of the Liturgy—are: (1) strengthening the liturgical catechesis in order to raise the awareness of the believers; (2) audacity to identify new solutions, as Communion is a method, not a doctrine (but the solution must be communal and hierarchical); (3) the use of means of communication such as Facebook and WhatsApp led to the emergence of virtual communities, which the Orthodox Church could use in order to strengthen its parish churches.