South Africans give thanks for Mandela improvement

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JOHANNESBURG — Some South Africans have given thanks in Sunday prayers for the improvement in the health of Nelson Mandela, the former president who was discharged from a hospital after treatment for pneumonia.

Members of an outdoor congregation in Johannesburg say 94-year-old Mandela was in their thoughts often during his most recent hospitalization. The anti-apartheid leader and Nobel Peace Prize laureate was admitted to a hospital in the South African capital of Pretoria on the night of March 27 and was discharged on Saturday.

Knowledge Modisa, a South African advertising manager, says she and other worshippers have been putting Mandela “first” in their prayers.

Mandela spent 27 years in prison during the period of white racist rule that ended with his election to the presidency in a democratic vote in 1994.

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