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All pilgrims can do is pray from outside the main gate of the Minor Basilica of St Anne in Bukit Mertajam, Penang. St Anne's feast day was on July 24, 2020. Photo by: Stephen Wong

Peter Barnabas: A different feeling at St Anne’s this year

Each year the feast of St Anne draws tens of thousands to the Minor Basilica of St Anne in Bukit Mertajam. This year things are different and Peter Barnabas tells us why. He and his family have been parishioners there, and this is also where he serves as a communion minister. All photos by Stephen Wong, parishioner of Minor Basilica of St Anne.
JULY 31, 2020

This year’s St Anne’s feast day novena masses for the total of 10 days were all done online through life streaming. This was in response to the Covid-19 precautionary measure taken by the Minor Basilica St Anne’s feast day committee team. This measure was taken to prevent large gatherings of pilgrims as this would make it difficult for the church to enforce social distancing measures in view of the Government Covid-19 SOPs.

No parishioner or pilgrim was allowed into the church to attend the masses. Only choir members, commentators, readers, and persons-in-charge of liturgy were allowed. Pilgrims were not allowed inside the church compound. Pilgrims from far and near were only allowed to pray from outside the main church gate. Pilgrims and parishioners can only follow the novena masses through online.

Watch novena masses and prayers at the Minor Basilica of St Anne website here.