IN PICTURES | Diakonia Council of Churches' beachfront Good Friday service

Suthentira Govender Senior reporter
Cardinal Wilfred Napier places flowers on a cross to honour health workers, which was the theme of a beachfront Good Friday service in Durban.
Cardinal Wilfred Napier places flowers on a cross to honour health workers, which was the theme of a beachfront Good Friday service in Durban.
Image: Thuli Dlamini

The Diakonia Council of Churches paid tribute to health workers by hosting on open-air Good Friday service at Durban's beachfront on Friday morning.

Addington Hospital served as the backdrop for the service attended by a limited number of worshippers including KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala and Catholic Archbishop of Durban Cardinal Wilfrid Napier. The service was livestreamed to the public.

Napier said: “Last year we were not able to gather as a community, we had to be in our homes and do what we had to do.

“My message this year is that as we are able to gather, let us show love and a gift of ourselves to each other.

KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala at the beachfront Good Friday service.
KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala at the beachfront Good Friday service.
Image: Supplied

“One of the ways of loving is to make sure we observe all the safety measures that have been instituted, because we believe those measures have helped us to be where we are today.

“When we started Good Friday last year we had three or four people who died, this year it's over 50,000 who died in SA.

“That gives us an idea of just how severe this disease is.”

Napier urged South Africans to continue practising safety measures to prevent the spread of the virus.

Nurses in prayer at the beachfront Good Friday service.
Nurses in prayer at the beachfront Good Friday service.
Image: Supplied

Zikalala said while Easter was a time of spiritual rejuvenation, church congregants must be mindful “that Covid-19 is still here”.

“We need to ensure that we protect ourselves. We ask all South Africans to ensure that they follow all preventive measures that are in place. Let us not sleep where we are worshipping, let us worship and go back to our homes.”

Addington Hospital was the backdrop to the service.
Addington Hospital was the backdrop to the service.
Image: Supplied

He said this year's Good Friday service was dedicated to health workers “who have sacrificed themselves by leading the fight against Covid-19".

“It was an occasion to remember those who perished in the fight, as they paid the ultimate price for us. We also remember all of those leaders and community members who have passed on because of Covid-19.”

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