The Archbishop of Lima, Carlos Castillo, lined the pews of his cathedral with the faces of Peru's deceased coronavirus victims, making up more than 5,000 portraits, British daily The Guardian reported.
Under orders from the cleric, church workers lined the church's 84 pews with the faces, and when those were full, they attached thousands more photos to the bases of the columns that rise to the arched ceiling.
The act was done in a commentary on the government's health system's handling of the coronavirus outbreak, which the cleric said was “based on egotism and on business and not on mercy and solidarity with the people”.
Castillo called for solidarity with the poor as Peru faces a projected economic contraction of 12% this year, according to The Guardian. Hundreds of people have died without receiving aid from the health system, and many people face financial ruin as they try to care for their sick.
“An even harder moment is coming,” Castillo added. “It would be terrible if in the times to come we have thousands of these photos – but dead of hunger.”
The virus has killed at least 6,600 people in Peru, and there have nearly 230,000 cases according to the Johns Hopkins University coronavirus tracker.