The text of a statement issued by Archbishop Thabo Makgoba on Sunday:
(South African soccer chief Danny Jordaan is reported to have told a memorial service for Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa - who was killed in a robbery, Olympic athlete Mbulaeni Mulaudzi and boxer Phindile Mwelase that "we must take those guns to the furnace and build a statue for Senzo Meyiwa.”)
Thousands of Christians and people of other faiths are praying today for the families of our sports heroes. Our heartfelt condolences go out to them.
Their deaths could not have come at a worse time for our nation, coming as they do while dozens of other families endure an agonising wait for the bodies of their loved ones to be repatriated from Lagos after the church guest house collapse. We hope that happens soon now.
I support Danny Jordaan fully in his call for a drive against illegal weapons. We need a major intervention to curb violence and the use of guns in South Africa.
We should beat our swords into ploughshares and our spears into pruning-hooks by collecting illegal guns across the country, melting them down in furnaces, and turning them into objects which stand for peace.