A vicar has found an unusual way to give out Holy Communion bread while sticking to coronavirus guidelines - by using chopsticks.
Rev Eileen Harrop, who grew up in Singapore and loves Asian cuisine, uses extra-long serving chopsticks to share the holy bread with parishioners at St Mary's church in Gainford and St Andrew's in Winston, County Durham.
The current Church of England coronavirus advice for Holy Communion states that communicants can be offered only bread, representing the body of Christ, but should not be offered wine, representing the blood, as there should be no "common cup".
But the vicar said many members of her parish were "quite anxious" at the thought of receiving the bread - a fear the chopsticks have assuaged.
"Administering the communion in this way ensures that there is no cross-contamination and my parishioners feel reassured and confident to take part," she says.
"It's rather special that the long chopsticks I use are normally used for the festive occasion 'Lo Hei', meaning 'stir the uplifted breath of life'," she adds.
"They take on an even greater meaning used in this context."
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