Religion in the time of Corona

How does religion work in the age of social distancing? What are the roles of religion during the COVID-19 pandemic? Social distancing is crucial in preventing the spread of COVID 19. However, many religions require the believers to congregate, and many people turned to religions to cope with stress and anxiety due to COVID-19.

During the first Lunchtime Talk Series powered by PechaKucha which was held on 06 April 2021, Dr Tan Min Min shared about how to promote a partnership between the healthcare system and religious organizations in response to COVID-19 and future communicable diseases.

Disease prevention measures such as social distancing without due consideration of culture and religion will be met with resistance. In the case of COVID 19 in Malaysia, the challenge is to implement preventive measures that are religiously acceptable by diverse religious groups.

“More importantly, for the partnership between the healthcare system and religious institution to work, religious organizations should not preach against public health measures such as social distancing; and religion should not be downplayed and blamed for the spread of disease,” said Dr Tan.