KENYA: Churches to Resume Full Capacity as Interfaith Council Lifts Restrictions

By Arnold Neliba

NAIROBI, MARCH 15, 2022 (CISA)-The Interfaith Council on Covid-19 have announced places of worship can now resume full capacity and lifted time limits for the services marking the transition of the phased reopening of places of worship to Phase Four.

In a statement dated March 14 and signed by the Council chairperson, Archbishop Antony Muheria of the Catholic Archdiocese of Nyeri, the council also vacated the limitations of attendants and timing in funerals and weddings.

The religious leaders, however, warned that although the country has lifted many of the containment measures, “…the Covid-19 effects will still be felt in the society and the families for a long time to come. Let us continue praying that God may help us make our contribution towards rebuilding our expressions of faith, and sustaining our society in all areas.”

The religious leaders implored Kenyans to watch out for the many families immensely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and to come to their aid in mitigating their challenges.

“We single out, especially the Covid orphans and widows. We all, together with the government, should seek ways of mitigating their strife through some means of support,” said Archbishop Muheria.

Although the Government through the Ministry of Health lifted the longstanding mandatory wearing of facemasks in public places, the Interfaith Council advised in what it terms as a ‘measure of prudence’ congregants to continue wearing masks in the places of worship.

“We still warn that the covid-19 pandemic is not yet over. The danger still hangs, even as it seems to wane in its infectious spread. We must not lower our guard,” Archbishop Muheria said in calling for adherence to measures of hygiene, by washing hands or sanitizing before and after the worship services, as well as in all moments when handling shared items.

The easing of containment measures was informed by the reported 0.5 percent of prevalence rate of infections in the past two months.  Additionally, the country has also recorded less than 2 covid-19 related deaths in over four weeks.