Should churches reopen now? Pastor Isaacs says yes, in smaller groups
A number of religious organisations would like to resume religious services, currently prohibited under lockdown regulations.
CapeTalk host Jeremy van Wyk speaks to Pastor Barry Isaacs of Freedom of Religion South Africa.
We are all faced with something we have not been faced with before.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
Life after this is never going to be the same again.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
Bringing it closer home to the church, we clearly understand when the president, in the beginning, took the stance that we have to close down and refrain from getting together in large groups because of the risk of contamination and infecting others.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
Concerns are being expressed about the need to reopen churches, he says.
He describes two camps within the church in this regard - some argue for normal reopening and others argue strict measures need to be put in place and to act responsibly for reopening.
There are those arguing for the churches to open up and people get together in smaller groups, and also to have the social distancing, sanitising, etc, no hugging, no kissing, and to do the right things.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
He believes the church as a role to play in the City of Cape Town.
We have been doing things we have been doing for years like feeding the poor, counseling, burying the dead, taking care of dysfunctional marriages...we are here to serve and that's what we want to do.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
So how would services look during lockdown and even beyond?
He says his personal view is that at this time congregants should be allowed to get together in smaller groups between 50 and 75 people well-spaced out.
I don't think worshippers are that crazy that they will run around and hug each other, besides standing with their hands in the air, worshipping the Lord and singing songs to worship God and the word is being preached.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
He says the bigger problem will arise with the mega-churches who have services of over 1000 people.
Presently they have had a lot of services online and they need to come up with a plan that understands the times.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
I would be very comfortable to see churches meeting in smaller groups, well-disciplined, well-controlled with facilitators in place...and I believe that can happen.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
It is being said that pastors are concerned about the money issue...there is money involved because every church, like any business under the sun, has bills to pay.Pastor Barry Isaacs - Freedom of Religion South Africa
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