Colombo: Sri Lanka’s Catholic Church held its first Sunday mass amid tight security, three weeks after devastating suicide attacks on three churches and luxury hotels that killed over 250 people on Easter Sunday, last month.
Regular services were cancelled across all churches after the deadly suicide attacks claimed by the Islamic State (IS).
However, the Archbishop of Colombo, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith conducted private Sunday services in the past two weeks, which were broadcast live on national television. He had announced Thursday that mass would be held in his diocese, Sunday onwards.
“It was just this morning (Sunday) that churches resumed their normal Sunday services since the attack,” residents said.
Security has been beefed up across Sri Lanka after the April 21 attacks on three churches, two of them Catholic, and three luxury hotels. Authorities did not allow any vehicles into the compound of the churches and worshippers were asked to bring only minimum baggage.
The security forces are conducting round the clock security operations since the attack in the crackdown on radical Muslims with links to the bombings.
Cardinal Ranjith had said, April 30 that public mass in Sri Lanka would resume May 5 and no bags will be allowed inside as part of the tight security measures. But later on that day was cancelled as news of more probable attacks came in.