Chicago officials plead with city's worshippers to celebrate Easter, Passover from home

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Worshippers from various religions gathered online Friday, together but physically apart.

Many Christians tuned into a number of streaming services for Good Friday. The Jewish religion is marking Passover, bringing services online or on Facebook as well.

It's all an effort to keep everyone at home, despite this typically being a time of gathering together.

In Northbrook, Congregation Beth Shalom became part of a new reality across the Chicago area this weekend.

In Elmhurst, a virtual Good Friday service was held at Epiphany Lutheran Church Friday.

And in Pilsen, fewer than 10 people gathered for Via Crucis. The streets sat empty for a procession that normally draws thousands.

"We are six feet away, but the warmth is there," said Nellie Quintana, who attended the ceremony in the Southwest Side neighborhood. "Jesus is with us. The warmth is there."

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot made a plea to the faithful Friday.

"I implore all Chicagoans and faith leaders to celebrate in any way you can, as long as it's done separately," Lightfoot said.

Chicago Ald. Howard Brookins also urged people to be safe and stay home.

"If we do this now, we can celebrate many birthdays and Easters and Christmases to come," Ald. Brookins said.
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