Sebokeng religious leaders say churches shouldn't be closed

A pastor and several congregants are behind bars for violating lockdown regulations. eNCA’s Manqoba Mchunu reports. Courtesy #DStv403

JOHANNESBURG - Religious leaders in Sebokeng say there were no consultations with the government regarding the new lockdown regulations on church gatherings.

At the weekend, police used rubber bullets to disperse crowds that had gathered for a meeting.

READ: Observing COVID-19 protocols during church services

Apostle John Radebe is one of the leaders who spent a night in jail after the chaos.

He said churches can't be closed down as they serve as an important pillar of the community.

Apostle John Radebe from God's Power Ministries said, "the difficulty is this when directives are made, they are made in platforms that are far from us. We only needed a platform for our own leadership to hear the pain of the directives."

"Other than that there's nothing that I can say but I will the church we don't rebel against the government because the Bible itself urges us to submit to them." 

WATCH: Congregants arrested for violating lockdown regulations

"Police should do their work, they are the law enforcers, they are given the mandate to do that and they just did that," he said. 

"I'm only happy if our cry is being heard by our own government that they cannot shut down the church. If they have to: proper consultations should be done because some of the people live from the church. I for one, when I'm here." 

"I was actually devastated yesterday thinking about the people that actually receive support from the church. Now if the church is shut down, no offering, no help from the government." 

Radebe said the church is attempting to follow COVID-19 protocols.


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