Pretoria, 05 February, 2021 / 7:30 pm (ACI Africa).
Some Catholic Prelates in South Africa have announced the resumption of public worship in their respective jurisdictions following the readjustment of level three COVID-19 restrictions by the country’s President.
In his address to the nation Monday, February 1, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the lifting of a ban on faith gatherings, allowing the faithful to congregate “but only to a maximum of 50 people for indoor events and 100 for outdoors events.”
President Ramaphosa had, on 28 December 2020, ordered, among other restrictions, a ban on public gatherings including faith-based ones, as a move to curb the rising number of infections caused by a new mutation of COVID-19 identified as 501.V2 variant.
The new strain of the pandemic has led to a spike in COVID-19 infections to 1.47 million. At least 1.33 million people have recovered while 45,605 others have succumbed to COVID-19-related complications, among them, the Coadjutor Archbishop of Durban, Abel Gabuza.
Following the easing of restrictions on gatherings, Archbishop Dabula Anthony Mpako of South Africa’s Pretoria Archdiocese instructed that all churches in his jurisdiction be reopened for “public liturgical services, including Masses with the faithful, with immediate effect.”