On Good Friday, remember God's love, mercy

As Christians across the country commemorate Good Friday amidst so much fear as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, they should remember God's love, grace and mercy.

 A state of emergency order banning gatherings of more than five people means that families will be observing the Holy Week in their households instead of church services. 

Pastor Samoa Unoi, of the Peace Chapel Christian Fellowship, said as the whole world battles through COVID-19 during Easter period, it is all part of tribulations. 

“The coronavirus is all part of trial like natural disasters and health crisis that previous generations went through,” said Pastor Unoi. 

“It is timely that the world is battling this virus during Easter and it is sad that many lives have been taken and many others have suffered because of it. 

“But these are just trials that mankind go through and we must be strong and courageous for our God will not leave or forsake us.” 

 Pastor Unoi added that observing Good Friday as countries around the world encounter COVID-19 is important to remind everyone to have faith in God. 

“He has plans for us and he will not leave us,” he said. 

“COVID-19 will leave us but the love of God will stay with us.”

Good Friday is a Christian holiday that marks the day of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. 

Pastor Unoi said while the day is in remembrance of Jesus death it is a “good” day. 

“It is the greatest thing that he died for us, for our sins,” he said. 

“Where there is good there is also bad and although the death of Jesus may have been bad news but his death has been a good thing that has cleansed our sins and connected us with God. 

“It showed God’s kindness and mercy extended to the sinful world so that the world has the opportunity to connect back to the Creator of us all.”

Furthermore, Pastor Unoi said Good Friday is a very important day in the Christians calendar and people should be reminded of God’s love and the opportunity he has given to everyone. 

In support of the Government’s order to ban church gatherings, the pastor encouraged people to comply with the state of emergency orders. 

He said the paramount goal of the Government is to ensure people are safe and it is praising the Lord in numbers that is important but what is within each individual. 

“Whether we gather or to commemorate Good Friday but if our hearts are not true then God will not hear us. 

“But the preventative measures are for our safety and such has reflected positively with the no cases in our country.” 

Lastly, Pastor Unoi said that supposed that the remaining suspected cases tests come back negative then he urges the Government to relax the orders for church gatherings and travel to Savai’I and American Samoa who do not have positive cases. 

He said keeping the international border shut will ensure Samoa is free from COVID-19. 

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