Heartbreaking pictures show coffins packed into an Italian church as authorities struggle to keep up with the high number of deaths following the coronavirus outbreak.
Priests have had to carry out mass blessings because funerals are currently banned.
One said that officials do not know what to do with all the bodies as the death toll continues to rise.
Father Mario Carminati, senior priest in Seriate in Bergamo, northern Italy, said large clusters of coffins are brought in every day.
The 64-year-old, who has been a priest for 40 years, said: “Authorities didn’t know where to put the coffins.”
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After blessings are carried out, the coffins are collected on forklift trucks by troops in protective gear.
The priest said the saddest thing for him was that many of his parishioners died alone, without loved ones, because restrictions in place to stem the spread of the virus do not allow family members into hospitals.
After blessing around 40 coffins he said: “We often talk about the most needy and these are truly the most needy now.
“They are the most needy even though they are no longer alive.
“No one has the time or opportunity to take care of them anymore so I decided to open the house of the Lord to them.”
Latest figures show that 10,779 people have died in Italy after contracting coronavirus, while 97,689 have been infected.
More than 33,000 people around the world have died from Covid-19.