Under the conditions of physical distancing and closed cultural and educational institutions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, scientists at the Institute of Art Studies (IAS) provide temporary on-line access to their rare and expensive editions on the site: http://artstudies.bg/?page_id=12195
These editions are dedicated to up-to-date studies on the culture and art of Bulgaria and the world and are in small circulation, intended primarily for experts, richly illustrated and representative, but scientists believe that in a state of crisis and limited communication such books would contribute to easier tolerance of forced self-isolation.
Certain editions of IAS are also dedicated to Christian art, and the on-line access to them is related to the upcoming Easter holidays. In this regard, the director of the Institute, Prof. Dr. Emmanuel Moutafov, recalls the words of St. John the Theologian: “A person who because of need cannot visit a church can transform himself into an altar (the temple altar – E.M.) to which he prays.” The same Father of Orthodoxy, when speaking of love for his neighbor, mentions: “You honor the altar of today because from there you receive the body of Christ (Holy Communion – E.M.), but you treat haughtily the one who is the body of the Lord himself, looking at him indifferently how he gets lost. You can see this altar rising everywhere – in narrow streets and squares where you can sacrifice to Him at all times” (John Chrysostom, Commentary on 2 Corinthians).
Therefore, Prof. E. Moutafov advises: in the situation of a pandemic, welcome the Easter holidays at home, making yourself an altar of pure faith, read and do not put others at risk, especially the priests who are few.