Instead of lining the roads to observe the funeral cortege, John Hume's family is asking people to light a candle in their homes and pray.
John Hume's family has asked mourners to "light a candle for peace" in their homes tonight at 9 pm rather than line the streets in order to prioritize public health.
According to The Irish Times, Hume's remains will be transported from his home in Moville, Co Donegal this evening, August 4, at 7:30 pm local time to arrive at St. Eugene's Cathedral in Derry sometime after 8:30 pm.
Hume's family said in a statement late on Monday: "John loved the people of Derry and Donegal. The heartfelt and sincere condolences that we have received from people across the island, but particularly from the communities John loved being a part of, have been immensely comforting to us.
"We know that he would have prioritized public health and the safety and health of our communities. We’re asking people to follow that guidance, please do not put yourself or others at risk.
"Instead we would ask that people light a candle for peace at 9 pm in their homes or at their door."
Read More: Tributes paid to Irish peacemaker John Hume
Additionally, Father Paul Farren, Administrator of the Cathedral of Saint Eugene who met with the Hume family on Monday, said: “Pat and her family are very grateful for the outpouring of love and support following the death of their beloved John.
"The family are anxious that a public gathering for John’s funeral might inadvertently put someone’s health at risk in the context of the current COVID19 pandemic, and are asking that people express their grief by staying at home and joining with the Hume family in a ‘Celebration of Light for Peace.’”
Father Farren continued: “Instead of lining roads and streets to show respect for John, it is the wish of the Hume family that we remain at home and, at 9:00 pm, light a candle and join with the family to pray the Prayer for Peace of Saint Francis of Assisi in the presence of John’s body in the Cathedral.
"This ‘Celebration of Light for Peace’ is a fitting tribute to a much loved and distinguished Irishman.”
Father Farren shared the words for the Prayer of Peace by Saint Francis of Assisi:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace:
Where there is hatred, lew me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant me that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive,
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
John Hume’s funeral is set to take place at St. Eugene's Cathedral in Derry on Wednesday, August 5 at 11:30 am local time. The funeral will be broadcast live on both BBC and RTE. It will also be available to watch on live stream via Church Services TV and Church Media. The St. Eugene's Cathedral Facebook page will additionally live stream the funeral.
Several virtual books of condolence have been opened across Ireland for Hume's mourners: Derry City & Strabane, Belfast City, Dublin City, Wicklow, Limerick, Galway City, Cork City, Cavan, Sligo, Offaly.