COVID Statement from Tanzania for AWF Conference

April 19, 2020
Greetings from the Tanzania Annual Conference. We greet you in the name of our Risen Savior and with the Hope of the Easter Season.
Thank you for letting us know how you are doing and ways in which to pray for you. This global pandemic is in many ways both scary and yet uniting as we move through this time together and united in Christ as one Body and one family through the blood of our savior.
In Tanzania we have been dealing with COVID-19 for almost a month now. In that short time we have seen cases continue to rise from 1 to 25 and now over 90 confirmed cases. It has gone from being brought into Tanzania by people traveling abroad to being spread among our population through contact with others already in Tanzania.
We face many challenges with our health care system, our ability to test and trace contacts, and our ability to treat and care for those diagnosed. We thank our government for their quick response in closing schools, canceling events, and reducing the meeting of large groups. However, we are also challenged by the idea of isolation and social distancing with many having to choose between going out to face the coronavirus or facing hunger and starvation at home.
Our churches and faith communities continue to provide hope in this time. Most of our churches continue to meet, but are taking precautions of hand washing, not shaking hands, and not sitting close together at worship services. Our churches are also working on being a source of education to the community by teaching others how to take precautions.
Our President, Dr. John Magufuli, has called for three days of prayer for all people of faith starting on Friday, April 17th and extending to Sunday, April 19th. We will be using this time to fast, study scripture, and pray for the healing and deliverance of our country. We will make sure to pray for you during this time and we invite you to join us during this time in praying about this virus that is spreading around the world, remembering the many vulnerable groups who are in danger both of becoming sick, but also who will suffer from economic challenges and lack of basic necessities during this time.
We are blessed to be together during this time, while separated by a long distance, we are still united in our faith, our love of Christ, and our desire to be in mission to the whole world and to see it transformed through the Body of Christ.