Passover, Easter Sunday go virtual after restrictions placed on large gatherings

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — With both the Passover and Easter holidays coming up this week, families are getting creative to safely celebrate while keeping their distance.

Passover Seder at Rabbi David Julian’s home is usually packed with up to 30 people gathered around the table.

“Lots of our friends who’ve done seders with us for many years would’ve all been together in one room. This year, we’re all together in one big Zoom,” said Julian, who serves as rabbi and cantor at Or Chadash synagogue.

He’s getting creative because he’s listening to experts who said don’t gather with anyone outside your immediate household.

“We’re going to have to try to stay away from each other to the extent we possibly can,” Baptist Hospital’s infectious disease specialist Dr. Steve Threlkeld said.

Julian said he’s cautiously optimistic about how Zoom will handle so many people participating in one service at the same time.

Meanwhile, a Whitehaven pastor said he’s also getting creative for Easter this week.

Pastor Christopher Davis said his congregation has met the challenge to practice their faith safely. He led worship virtually and they’re holding an Easter egg hunt by car in the church parking lot. His members also instituted a family potluck done at a distance.

“I think it’s like 15 of them, so they will put 15 servings of macaroni and cheese in individual plates, and then you go to the next house, you pick up and then you drop off,” said Davis, pastor at St. Paul Baptist Church.

He said they’re not restricting family time, but instead reinventing it.

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