With churches closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, one Catholic priest in Tijuana, Baja California, is still managing to spread the gospel.
Using a pickup truck and Facebook Live, Rev. Jorge Echegollén of the Parish of San Miguel Arcángel travels to the city’s hospitals to provide spiritual comfort to medical personnel and families of the afflicted.
“To all the sick, doctors, security guards and all the relatives, God bless you, in the name of the father,” Echegollén preaches.
Echegollén is one of about 20 priests dispatched by the Archdiocese of Tijuana to deliver drive-in blessings, communions and funeral services to the faithful which he also broadcasts online to a following of more than 6,000 viewers. The archdiocese also offers online confessions and counseling.
“I know that we are not going to change history if we do or do not give the blessing, but we trust in God’s mercy, especially for those most in need who are sick with Covid-19,” Echegollén says.
Before leaving on his motorized tour, Echegollén broadcasts a daily mass on YouTube from his church, taping photos of faithful parishioners to the empty pews. And although cyber-preaching serves an important need, the priest will welcome a full house when the time is right.
“People are very much missed. The noise of the children is the joy of the parish,” Echegollén says.