In a day of national prayer, South Africans honored the legacy of the late Nelson Mandela.
At the Regina Mundi Church in the Soweto township, which is near the location of the 1976 anti-apartheid uprising, Father Sebastian J. Rossouw called Mandela, who died Thursday at 95, a guiding light for South Africans. Hundreds attended the service dedicated to the former president, the Associated Press reports.
In Johannesburg, South African President Jacob Zuma joined Mandela’s ex-wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, and his grandson, Mandla Mandela, for a prayer service.
“We felt it important that we should have a day where all of us as South Africans can come together and pray for our first democratic president and reflect on his legacy,” Zuma said. “But it is also to pray for our nation … to pray that we not forget some of the values he fought for.”
A national memorial service is planned for Tuesday to honor the Nobel Prize Laureate and South Africa’s first black president, where world leaders will gather to remember him. In attendance will be U.S. President Barack Obama, former presidents Jimmy Carter, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, French President Francois Hollande, Brazilian President Dilma Rouseff, Cyprus’ Parliamentary Speaker, Yiannakis Omirou, Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt, Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, Haitian Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe, Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway. King Willem-Alexander and Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans will also be present on behalf of the Netherlands.