CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — In this week’s episode of Inside West Virginia Politics, Easter 2021 saw the return of in-person services for many celebrating Easter week, and synagogues celebrating Passover.

Religious leaders of all faiths are thinking about this weekend’s message to their congregations, with COVID-19 still here. If there’s a common message, they’re preaching hope.

Finding hope and keeping faith amid challenging times

In Segment 1, Bishop Michie Klusmeyer of the West Virginia Diocese makes an appearance as he shares this Easter theme of finding hope and keeping faith during the pandemic.

Visit the West Virginia Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston website here.

Passover: The importance of patience during difficult times

In Segment 2, Rabbi Victor Urecki of the B’nai Jacob Synagogue in Charleston speaks of the significance of the story of Passover in the Jewish faith and how, through that story, important it is to know your history and your identity, as well as the importance of patience.

“In broader strokes, the ideas of Passover are almost universal in it’s messages. A universal message of hope, the idea of liberation, the idea of taking care of the stranger,” said Rabbi Victor Urecki, B’nai Jacob Synagogue.

Visit the Congregation B’nai Jacob website here.

Ramadan: To exercising patience to stay positive during trying times

In Segment 3, Imam Nasir Abdussalem of the Islamic Association of West Virginia continues the conversation of practicing and exercising patience through difficult times.

Ramadan starts on April 12 and Abdussalem says the idea behind the holiday is to exercise patience over oneself. During the entire month of Ramadan, Muslims are obligated to fast, every day from dawn to sunset. Fasting requires abstinence from food and drink.

“Patience and hope, they go together like hand and glove. Because if I’m hoping for something better to happen…I have to be patient while I’m in the difficult situation in order to see it through,” said Abdussalem.

Visit the Islamic Association of West Virginia website here.

Easter: having faith in times of hopelessness

In Segment 4, Father Donald Higgs, Rector of the Basilica of the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, shares the message of Easter and the importance of renewing one’s faith in times of hopelessness.

The message of Easter the Father shares is the same message shared for the last 2,000 years — how the resurrection of Jesus Christ breaks the fear of death for many Catholics.

Visit the Basilica of the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart website here.