A liturgy is to be performed next week in sign language for the first time ever in Cyprus, aiming to include the deaf in the holy mysteries of the Greek Orthodox Church.
A theologian will travel from Greece at the invitation of the Bishopric of Tamasos and Orinis to simultaneously interpret the liturgy into sign language for the deaf people who will attend. The service will take place on Sunday, November 19 at the church of Ayios Ioannis Chrysostomos in Lakatamia, in the Nicosia district.
According to the church’s priest Father Kyriacos Kasparis, initially the bishopric will bring the theologian over once per month, increase to once per fortnight and on major religious holidays depending on his schedule.
“This arrangement is aimed at satisfying the needs of the deaf faithful who have never had the opportunity to follow a liturgy and have someone explain to them the deeper meanings in their own language,” Father Kyriacos told the Cyprus Mail.
This will be the first time, he said, that deaf people will have the opportunity to participate more actively in divine liturgies.
This is the beginning of a broader effort that will later include the opening of a school for deaf children. You can read the whole story here.