Methodist Church offers support counter virus measures

The Methodist Church in Samoa will suspend all its church services if Government enforces a ban on public gatherings as a preventative measure for the coronavirus.

This was confirmed by Reverend Dr. Eteuati Tuioti, the General Secretary of the Methodist Church in Samoa in an interview with Samoa Observer.

“We are currently waiting on the Government’s advice and the church will support any decision they will make,” he said.

Rev. Tuioti added that the reason being is that it concerns the safety of well being of church members.

“We are in times of crisis; we have no option but to comply because it is for the safety and welfare of our people.

“But we must keep the faith and even though if we suspend church services families should pray in the comfort of their homes.

“And to make sure the children and family members are well looked after and safe.”

The General Secretary added that praying at home is not new for Samoan families.

“It is a Samoan practice that is done by families every evenings or mornings.

“We have already issued a statement earlier this week to our overseas church branches such as Australia, New Zealand and America to inform all church ministers to stop church services.

“It is because these are the countries with confirmed cases of coronavirus and it all comes down to safety for our church members and because lives are at stake.”

Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, has confirmed that the Government is seriously considering the possibility of closing Samoa's borders, shutting schools and a ban on all public gatherings to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

He said that the orders will be finalised and a decision will be made on Friday. 

Tuilaepa said that Cabinet is considering banning of public transport (namely bus and taxis), ban on meetings and gatherings such as church gatherings, family meetings and celebration; funerals and weddings to prevent the spread of the virus.

As the leader of the country, he urged leader of the churches to fast and pray for the country for God’s mercy and help to save Samoa. 

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