Workers place a mask on a 57-metre-high statue of Buddhist goddess Kannon to pray for the end of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic at Houkokuji Aizu Betsuin temple in Aizuwakamatsu, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan Photograph:( Reuters )
The statue is located in a temple in Fukushima Prefecture called 'Houkokuji Aizu Betsuin'
A massive custom-made face mask weighing 35 kg (77 pounds) was placed on a giant Buddhist goddess statue in Japan to pray for the end of the coronavirus pandemic.
The "mask", made with net fabric and measuring 4.1 metres (13.5 ft.) by 5.3 metres (17.4 ft.), was carried on ropes by four workers, who took three hours to scale and place the material on the 57-metre (187-ft.) statue.
The statue is located in a temple in Fukushima Prefecture called "Houkokuji Aizu Betsuin".
The statue, built 33 years ago, is hollow with a spiral staircase that can be climbed to the height of the goddess' shoulder. People visit the statue, which is holding a baby, to pray for the safe delivery of babies and to ask for blessings for their newborns.
Temple manager Takaomi Horigane said workers came up with the idea for the face mask in discussions on the restoration of the statue after it was damaged in an earthquake in February.
Horigane said they plan to keep the mask on the statue until the COVID-19 situation is under control in Japan.