Sri Lanka’s Catholic Church will televise a private Sunday mass after cancelling regular services over fears of a repeat of Easter suicide bombings that killed 257 people, a spokesman said.
Father Edmund Tillakaratne said public masses were suspended for a second week, but a service conducted by Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith will be broadcast on national television.
“It will be like last Sunday when we had a service at Archbishop’s chapel and telecast it live,” Tillakaratne said.
Ranjith, who is also archbishop of Colombo, said Thursday that a “reliable foreign source” had alerted him to possible attacks this weekend, leading him to cancel Sunday services for the second week.
Official sources said the Thewatte National Basilica, just outside Colombo, was the suspected target, and the military deployed hundreds of troops to search the area.
The government is going ahead with plans to reopen public schools tomorrow, but the Church said Catholic schools will remain shut “until further notice”.
Sri Lankan authorities had advance warnings from Indian intelligence of the impending Easter attacks but police and security forces failed to act, leading to Sri Lanka’s worst single suicide attack against civilians.