Christians mark Good Friday, Holy Week under virus woes

JERUSALEM (AP) — For a second year, Christians in the Holy Land are marking Good Friday without the mass pilgrimages usually seen in the Holy Week leading up to Easter because of the coronavirus. Worshippers in other predominantly Christian countries where the virus is still raging are observing their second annual Holy Week with tight restrictions on gatherings. In Latin America, penitents from Guatemala to Paraguay carried large crosses and tree branches covered with thorns in Passion Plays reenacting the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. At the Vatican, Pope Francis presided over a torch-lit Way of the Cross ceremony in St. Peter’s Square, foregoing a traditional Colosseum procession that draws thousands of pilgrims, tourists and Romans.