No singing Grace Bible Church holds first service since the start of lockdown
It is one hour before the beginning of the service at the Grace Bible Church in Pimville, Soweto and almost all the congregants have arrived. The church will hold its very first service to be attended by people since the beginning of the national lockdown in March.
Only leaders are attending the proceedings on Sunday. All those who attended had to register online and answer several questions about their health. These are part of the requirement which has been set out by the department of cooperative governance and traditional affairs for church to comply to.
At the entrance, there was still screening that was done. All people were subjected to temperature testing and were sanitised. The service was not held at the big auditorium but at the youth hall. At the entrance of the hall is banners that provide information on Covid-19 and how people can prevent the virus.
Inside chairs were already positioned to allow for proper social distancing. On the stage was just the pulpit and there was no six-piece band which would normally lead the congregation into worship. As pastors and bishops settle on their chairs, soft music played a popular gospel song “it is a wonderful day”.
Gas heaters were placed inside the youth hall to help fight the cold of the morning. There was no singing as Bishop Mosa Sono took to the pulpit.
“For now we have our leaders here. We are testing our compliance system today. It will help for the leaders to see what is supposed to happen before we can open all of our other branches. It is going to be a gradual process. Today and the foreseeable future it is going to be just Pimville. Once we are satisfied with all the systems, we will gradually open the other branches,” Sono said.
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