Harare, 15 August, 2021 / 6:00 pm (ACI Africa).
The reopening of churches only for congregants vaccinated against COVID-19 in Zimbabwe is problematic, Christian leaders in the Southern African nation have cautioned.
In a Thursday, August 12 statement, the leaders under the Zimbabwe Heads of Christian Denominations (ZHOCD) welcome the August 11 announcement to reopen churches after their closure in July but describe the move to prevent those yet to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as one that raises “theological and practical challenges.”
“Though welcome by the churches, this staggered opening of Churches on the condition of being vaccinated raises both theological and practical challenges,” members of ZHOCD say.
Theologically, they explain, “the church is an open and welcoming space for everyone with no restrictions. No one qualifies for church service as it is a place of God’s grace.”
For this reason, ZHOCD members continue, “the church will find it very difficult to turn people home because they do not have a vaccination certificate.”