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130 Nepalese pastors dead following a second wave of Covid-19 in the country

by Premier Journalist

A second wave of Coronavirus in Nepal has taken the lives of at least 130 pastors leaving many churches leaderless. 

According to Hanok Tamang, chairman of the National Church Fellowship of Nepal (NCFN), many churches are struggling to find "a second in-line". 

Speaking to Christianity Today, Tamang said: "Some churches-particularly megachurches-had already prepared their second line of leadership to replace the pastors who went to be with the Lord," he said. "But this is not true everywhere."

"Many young wives have lost their husbands. Some children have lost their both father and mother, and the number of semi-orphans and complete orphans remained still unaddressed." 

The country reported as many as 9,000 daily cases and 4,000 deaths only in May. The Himalayan nation has been in lockdown since April, a measure that was put in place as the Delta variant was spreading across its neighbouring country India. 

Dilli Ram Paudel, general secretary of the Nepal Christian Society (NCS), also told Christianity Today congregations are also facing financial difficulties due to the income loss because of the pandemic. 

"Churches have been closed for almost one and a half years now. We have cooperated and complied with the government orders, and so the church has not been gathering. But this has meant that the income of churches has gone down. Many people have lost jobs and they do not have money, so how will they give?"

The World Evangelical Alliance has released a call to action to help Christians in Nepal. 

Screenshot taken from The Word Evangelical Alliance 

"We're calling Christians around the world to join us and send a message of love and hope to our brothers and sisters and their communities in Nepal. This is the right time for us to witness our Lord Jesus Christ and His love to the people of Nepal." 

Nepal will receive vaccines from the COVAX programme, the UN's vaccination initiative and the UK has sent aid to the country, with 260 ventilators and 2,000 PPE kits.

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