‘Shocked’ by overcrowding on Epiphany, says health expert

‘Shocked’ by overcrowding on Epiphany, says health expert

Manolis Dermitzakis, professor of genetics at the University of Geneva, said on Thursday he was “shocked” by the crowding he saw in the streets and the images of some faithful receiving Communion from the same spoon on Wednesday, when the Orthodox Church celebrates the feast of the Epiphany.

“I was shocked at how we can operate in such a way at such a time in the pandemic,” he told broadcaster Skai, expressing fears that the number of infections may jump nationwide in the coming days, as was the case in Thessaloniki a few months ago after the celebration of the northern port city’s patron saint, Agios Dimitrios.

“It is not a matter of faith, it is a matter of pure scientific evidence. What happened as a general activity with crowds and at the same time some people sharing a spoon [in Communion] means that science is institutionally rejected,” he added.

Dermitzakis said there is already data pointing to an increase in new cases during Christmas and New Year’s.

He also said that the stricter lockdown ahead of school re-openings was a good decision.

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