Urame discusses challenges churches facing during pandemic

Jack Urame

ELCPNG head bishop Rev Dr Jack Urame says many people are staying away from church service because they are afraid of being infected with the coronavirus (Covid-19).
“They are growing cold and becoming dormant in faith while others still find new ways of keeping their faith alive,” he said in his Easter message.
“Churches are also affected because the Covid-19 protocols have affected our behaviours, reducing communal worship.”
Rev Urame said Christians were unable to fully participate in church activities and celebrations as in the past.
“Church buildings and worship centres are not full anymore,” he said.
“People cannot sit close to one another to sing, pray and listen to the Word of God because mass gatherings have been discouraged.
“Pastors are not administering Holy Communion as usual because of the danger of spreading the virus through the elements of bread and wine.
“Therefore, the entire worship life of the church has changed dramatically.
“This has negative consequences on the faith of Christians.” However, Rev Urame said in the midst of the Covid-19 threat, “the Easter story reminds us of God’s unconditional love for humanity”.
“Christ, the Son of God, suffered and died and redeemed the world,” he said.
“He rose to life and defeated the devil and liberated all mankind.
“At this time, when we are overwhelmed by the pandemic, the Easter story of God’s love and liberation comforts and strengthens us.
“The good news of liberation and salvation gives us a new sense and perspective of life in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Despite the current challenges, God is still in control of the world and our lives.
“He is with us as he promised and said ‘I am with you always to the end of time’.
“This good news of God’s presence among us give us new hope.”

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