L.D.S. hosts fast amid coronavirus fears
The Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (L.D.S.) wards and branches in Samoa banded together on Sunday to fast for the imminent threat of the coronavirus reaching Samoa’s shores.
Following the announcement of New Zealand’s first confirmed coronavirus case on Friday afternoon, a L.D.S. spokesperson, Jason Bandish Joseph took the lead when he made the announcement in a Facebook post on Saturday.
The rest of Samoa were invited to join the L.D.S. fasting program as Mr. Joseph invited the general public who wished to partake.
“Due to the enormous impact of the virus across the world and our concerns for the time it reaches our country, the Presidents of the Stake have decided to host a special fasting on Sunday, March 1,” he said.
Mr. Joseph pleaded to the whole stake to fast for the safety of Samoa as well as a quick discovery of a vaccine to cure the virus, together with the protection of nurses and doctors currently dealing with the virus.
“We request every family of the L.D.S. Church to stand in solidarity and faith in front of our Heavenly Father and His son, Jesus Christ for this special fasting,” the notice reads.
The L.D.S. community was also reminded to stock up food and water, ensuring they have enough supply for three to 12 months, in case there should there be any case of emergency travel restrictions imposed in the country.
The fasting announcement comes a day before the Australian Government announced their first death in Australia after a man confirmed as having had the virus died in a Perth hospital.
Last year, the L.D.S. Church was among the first to put a stop to their programs due to the threat from the measles epidemic in Samoa.
A total of 160 Latter-day Saints-owned wards and branches in Upolu and Savai'i cancelled all worship services and other gatherings until the measles state of emergency passes.