Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA) Archives
Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA) Archives

Church Is Essential: 'If they open churches they might as well open groove'

By Staff Reporter Time of article published May 27, 2020

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Cape Town - After President Cyril Ramaphosa's announcement that churches, mosques and synagogues may resume religious services as long as these are limited to 50 people or less, social media weighed in the matter.

The president's announcement on Tuesday night comes after a meeting of the National Coronavirus Command Council which considered the inputs made by the religious sector in recent consultations with interfaith leaders.

He cautioned that care must be taken to ensure the safety of congregants and that the wearing of masks was compulsory.

"Any religious rituals that carry even the slightest possibility of exposing worshipers to risk should be avoided and that where they form an essential part of religious practice, that sanitation is paramount," Ramaphosa said.

Religious leaders will be recognised as essential religious frontline workers for the purpose of spiritual counselling for members of their faith organisations, he said.

"Whether you are a person of faith or not, there is one belief that unites us, and that is our belief in South Africa, in its people, in their courage and in their ability to overcome even the greatest of tribulations.

"As we worked tirelessly to heal the divisions of the past, so too will our united action bring us healing from this pandemic."

Social media reacted to this news and quickly had "#ChurchIsEssential" trending:

Some argued that for them going the club (or as it is colloquially referred to, "groove") is a spiritual experience, and that if the churches open, then so should the clubs.

Ramaphosa also announced a national day of prayer on Sunday, May 31, where all religious leaders and members of faith-based organisations are invited to pray for the country which has been hardest hit in Africa by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Cape Argus

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