GHANA:  Church Bans Handshakes and Hugs to Prevent Spread of Coronavirus  


ACCRA, MARCH 6, 2020 (CISA)-The Catholic Bishops Conference has directed all Catholics across the country to desist from handshakes and hugs during Mass.

In a March 2 statement, Archbishop Philip Naameh of Tamale, president of the Ghanaian Bishops’ Conference, also directed all Catholics to receive Communion only on the hand.

“All are encouraged to receive Holy Communion in the hand. Ministers and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion should wash their hands or use sanitizer before and after distributing Holy Communion. Avoid handshakes and embracing one another during Kiss of Peace,” reads the statement.

According to the bishops, this serves as a protective measure against the spread of corona virus which is currently a matter of global concern.

South Africa was the fourth country in Africa to confirm a case of corona Virus after Nigeria, Algeria and Egypt.

Health specialists warned of the risks of its spreading in Africa, because of the continent’s close commercial links with China and the fragility of its medical services.

“Our biggest concern continues to be the potential for Covid-19 to spread in countries with weaker health systems,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the head of the World Health Organization, told African Union health ministers gathered in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa on February 22.