A Group of Lay Catholics in Mauritius Spearhead Three-day National Prayer for Country

A poster announcing the three-day national prayer for Mauritius/Credit: Diocese of Port-Louis

A group of Catholics in the Indian Ocean Island nation of Mauritius are spearheading three days of national prayer for the country’s challenges, including COVID-19 pandemic and issues at personal level.

In a Tuesday, June 15 report published on the website of the Diocese of Port Louis in Mauritius, the lay Catholics under the auspices of the Ephata Association have scheduled the three days of prayer, fasting and abstinence from June 17.

“After some reflection, we have decided to invite all prayer groups and all Christians in Mauritius to 3 days of fasting, abstinence and prayer for an end to the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges facing our country,” the members of Ephata say in the report.

They add, “The sole purpose of this time of prayer is to give thanks to God with strength and conviction for our country and our leaders.”

“Whether we are for or against our political decision-makers, for or against their imposed decisions or laws, we want, with the grace of Jesus and Mary, to transcend our feelings, our opinions, our egos to ask the Lord to pour a shower of blessings on them, on our country and on our Church,” they say.


The decision to organize the national prayer day, Ephata members, was informed by “the difficulties facing the country, including anguish and incomprehension of Mauritians who live in total uncertainty about their future, with closed churches, individualism encouraged by the lockdown, self-enclosure, and violence in families.”

During the three days, Christian faithful in the country will be expected “to pray in families and follow meditations and Holy Mass which will be streamed live on ZOOM and YouTube,” the members of Ephata add in the report.

“A night of thanksgiving and meditation around the Word of God is also scheduled to start at 4.30pm on Friday, 18 June until the morning of Saturday, June 19,” they say.

Places of worship have remained closed in Mauritius since March after the government banned religious gatherings due to COVID-19. 

On May 1, some business restrictions were eased allowing markets to reopen and restaurants to operate.

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However, a number of businesses and services such as places of worship, beaches, public gardens, bars and nightclubs remain closed until further notice.

A country of 1.2 million people, Mauritius has recorded at least 1,701 COVID-19 cases including 18 deaths and 1,265 recoveries. 

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.