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Chief leads prayer for president and country

  • chief in parliament
Chief Rabbi Dr Warren Goldstein said a prayer on behalf of the Jewish community at the swearing in of South Africa’s president and newly elected members of parliament (MPs) on Wednesday.
by OWN CORRESPONDENT | May 23, 2019

In his prayer, he asked for President Cyril Ramaphosa and the new MPs to be blessed with abundant success in their sacred work for South Africa at this critical moment in our history.

“Bless them with the wisdom and the courage to restore morality and integrity to government, and indeed to all of society,” the chief rabbi said. He called on G-d to instil them with a “sense of sacred mission, of duty, and honesty” to permeate every decision and action they take as government. He asked that the MPs be blessed with “success in unleashing the awesome promise and potential of this country”, and he spoke of a country that has “waited so long for inspired ethical leadership to enable it to emerge in all of its bountiful possibilities”.

The chief rabbi has also written a prayer for the presidential inauguration on Saturday, which will be read out on his behalf because he cannot attend it on Shabbat.

He has sent a version of this prayer to shuls across the country to be recited on Saturday morning to coincide with the inauguration. It will be said after the Torah reading, and in addition to our prayers for the country and Israel.

In addition, Goldstein shared the prayer with other religious leaders of all faiths and citizens of South Africa, so that “as a country we can come together and humbly seek G-d’s blessings for the country, our president, and the betterment of all”.

“Prayer has real power to change the world in the most tangible way through G-d’s blessings,” Goldstein said.

He said he believed that G-d had given Ramaphosa an opportunity to restore morality and integrity to government and beyond. However, “No blessing can come to South Africa until morality and integrity are restored to government.

“The past ten years have seen one of the most brazen and iniquitous attempts in history to steal an entire country – all in broad daylight. The project of state capture unleashed and endorsed a feeding frenzy of corruption at every level which has impoverished and denuded every aspect of life for 50 million South Africans,” Goldstein said.

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