Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints worldwide will on Good Friday, April 10, observe fast and prayer to plead to God to save mankind from coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
This is the second time members of the church are fasting and praying as one body against coronavirus, in obedience to the admonition of their leader, President Russell M. Nelson. The first global fast and prayer held on Sunday, March 29, 2020.
Calling out church members to the second fast and prayer, President Nelson, while speaking on Saturday, on the occasion of the 190th Annual General Conference of the church in Salt Lake, Utah, United States,said: “For all whose health may permit, let us fast, pray, and unite our faith once again… Let us prayerfully plead for relief from this global pandemic.”
Nelson also invited members of other churches and faiths to join in the fast and prayer, saying: “I invite all, including those not of our faith, to fast and pray on Good Friday, April 10, that the present pandemic may be controlled, caregivers protected, the economy strengthened and life normalised.”
Explaing the fast and prayer, the church leader taught that a customary fast is two meals or a period of 24 hours.
He said: “But you decide what would constitute a sacrifice for you, as you remember the supreme sacrifice the Saviour made for you… Let us unite in pleading for healing throughout the world. Good Friday would be the perfect day to have our Heavenly Father and His Son hear us.”
President Nelson said an all-knowing, merciful God offers salvation to all who repent and believe in Him.
“So, during times of deep distress, as when illness reaches pandemic proportions, the most natural thing for us to do is to call upon our Heavenly Father and His Son — the Master Healer — to show forth Their marvelous power to bless the people of the earth,” he said.
Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints observe the law of the fast one day each month. It is an ancient doctrine practiced since the days of Moses, David, Esther, Isaiah and Daniel.
The Lord said in Old Testament times: “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free?” (Isaiah 58:6).
The New Testament’s Paul admonished Saints in Corinth to “give yourselves to fasting and prayer.” (1 Corinthians 7:5). And the Savior Himself taught that certain things go “not out but by prayer and fasting.” (Matthew 17:21).