South Sudanese Prelate Calls for Patience as Places of Worship, Schools Remain Closed

Archbishop Stephen Ameyu of Juba Archdiocese.
Credit: Public Domain

As frustration mounts in South Sudan owing to closure of schools and the protracted suspension of public worship, the Archbishop of Juba has called for patience as stakeholders plan the safe way to allow for liturgical celebrations in public and resumption of schooling.

Addressing Catholic teachers during a one-day workshop in Juba Thursday, September 3, Archbishop Stephen Ameyu said schools and places of worship cannot operate without clear understanding of COVID-19 preventive measures.

“COVID-19 has affected (the operation of) our schools mostly and I don’t think that anybody would like to (re)open the schools any time soon,” Archbishop Ameyu said.

He told the workshop participants that the effect of the coronavirus is “the reason we do not even want to open our Churches before people understand the nature of COVID-19 and the guidelines proposed by many sections of people in South Sudan.”

“The Church is drawing a plan on how churches and schools in the Archdiocese of Juba can resume operations,” the South Sudanese Prelate told the teachers and added, “Continue respecting the preventive and control measures provided by health experts to reduce spread of the coronavirus.”

Concerned about the suffering of the teachers during the pandemic, the Local Ordinary of South Sudan’s only Metropolitan See encouraged the faithful to pray for God’s intervention for an end to COVID-19 pandemic.

“I know many of you are suffering from this long lockdown and the impact of this pandemic has affected your families. I am sorry and I know that this corona has brought a lot of stress to your families,” Archbishop Ameyu said.

He added, “I hope that God will console you, keep you sound and liberate us from this pandemic.”

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