Romania’s Orthodox Church opposes the use of disposable spoons to offer communion, as recommended by authorities during the COVID-19 pandemic, and will postpone the sacrament.
Church services with worshipers in attendance have not been held since Romania declared a state of emergency in mid-March.
But starting Friday when restrictions begin to be eased, priests will be able to hold outdoor services. Congregants will be obliged to wear face coverings and keep a distance of 1.5 meters from each other.
The Orthodox practice of using a single spoon to administer wine to communicants dates back 900 years according to a document published by G4Media.
The Orthodox Church is not the only confession facing a dilemma over the sacrament.
Other churches such as the Catholic Church and the Protestant Church have also not celebrated the Eucharist since the pandemic spread across the world in March.
Some churches have held live online services, allowing church members to join in by using services like zoom.
In Romania and elsewhere, priests have livestreamed religious services which believers can tune in to, on the radio, the television or via the internet.
More than 85% of Romanians are Orthodox believers. The church suspended communion for two months during an epidemic in 1829.