St George’s Cathedral members grateful to attend Easter service this year

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Churchgoers at the Good Friday service at St George’s Cathedral in Cape Town, in the Western Cape, say they are grateful that they are able to attend in 2021.

In 2020, Easter services across South Africa were cancelled when the nation was placed under strict Level 5 lockdown after the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country.

Under the current revised Level 1 restrictions, 250 people are allowed to attend indoor gatherings and 500 people are allowed to attend outside gatherings.

Church congregants gather in small, controlled numbers at places of worship in Cape Town:

About 50 people attended the morning service at St George’s Cathedral. They shared their feelings.

“It felt a bit bitter sweet. It’s been a bit weird for this entire year and for most of last year, we haven’t been able to attend church and so it feels really solemn and really special to be able to be here today,” one congregant says.

“This is a high holiday for us as Christians and I missed it. I’m just so privileged to be among the saints and remember more than 2 000 years ago that a man, just an ordinary man, gave his life for the whole world and I’m one of them. So I made an effort this morning to get up and to come to the house of the Lord,” says another congregant.

Caution due to COVID-19

Dean of St George’s Cathedral, Reverend Michael Weeder, says the church will be extremely cautious when hosting services, in order to comply with strict COVID-19 protocols to curb the spread of the virus.

Reverend Weeder says congregants are also encouraged to worship at home.

“The intuitive sense is to stay at home if you’ve got co-morbidities; God is everywhere. We said that right at the beginning of the lockdown, and particularly on our first Good Friday and Easter, we encourage our people, with the understanding that God is worshipped wherever we breathe, wherever we live, wherever we love and care; and so that is a very essential reality of faith. You don’t need a magnificent building. The creation is the cathedral of God’s gift to us,” he adds.

Congregants gather at the St George’s Cathedral to observe Easter:

Services at various churches around the world are expected to continue over the weekend as Christians commemorate Easter.