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Religious groups in Soweto have strongly criticised the government for banning communal worship, saying such gatherings have been a great help to the nation’s well-being throughout the pandemic.
The country has taken drastic measures to curtail the spread of corona virus, but one question has generated fierce debate like no other; a ban on communal worship. The Covenant Partners Association of Pastors in Soweto described the ban as “rushed and unnecessary,” stating that the lockdown imposed by the government brought hardship, distress and suffering to many.
Members of the association, Pastor Linda Mabona, Cyril Sebaeng and Clothilda Mokgatle, agreed and were outspoken to the fact that churches have been negatively affected by lockdown since it suspended all Sunday services.
“The restrictions signal a very significant emotional blow for Christians and other religious groups as they now have to get used to online services”.
“It affected the church badly because members of the church would in a traditional sense come to church for prayers and emotional support,lockdown has also come at a financial cost for many churches”.
“We plead with the government to open churches at least on exceptional circumstances because not everyone can afford data and electronic devices for online streaming”.
Social networking websites have been thriving, with most churches playing catch up in facilitating their services to get streamed online.
Thapelo Magola Soweto Sunrise News