Covid-19: Churches in Osun comply with directive not to hold Sunday service…They revert to house fellowships

By Peter Akinbote

Christian worship centres in Osun State suspended their Sunday services in compliance with the state government directive that no church activities should hold in order to control spread of dreaded Coronavirus.

Many churches instead of congregational worship that attract hundreds of worshippers resorted house fellowship with as few as twenty members in attendance.

Does2Leak correspondent that monitored activities of many worship centres in Osogbo, the state capital reports that a task force of the state government was going round to know the level of compliance of churches with social distancing directive of the government.

Among the worship centres visited by our correspondent were the All Saints Anglican Church, Balogun-Agoro, Osogbo, the Methodist Church of Nigeria Diocese of Osogbo at Isale Aro, Osogbo and the Union Baptist Church, Odi-Olowo, Osogbo, the Kingdom Gate Global Missionary Outreach at Owode-Ede and the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Breakthrough Parish at Olosan, Ogo-Oluwa in Osogbo.

Other worship centres include that were closed to the worshipers are Winners’ Chapel, Christ Apostolic Church, Oke-Bale, Christ Apostolic Church, Latona, and Christ Apostolic Church, Ayetoro, Osogbo and the Holy Ghost Power Assembly Worldwide at Ogo-Oluwa area of Osogbo.

They all complied with the state government directive not to hold Sunday service.

On Saturday, the state government announced that all public gatherings in the state under any banner or organization, are placed on outright ban. 

A statement by the Secretary to the State Government, Prince Wole Oyebamiji, said the directive was as a result of the new confirmed cases of Covid-19 pandemic in Nigeria.

It would be recalled that most mosques last Friday were not opened for worship as many Muslims observed the Jumat prayers in their respective homes. 

Meanwhile, the Director of Media of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) in Osun State, Very Rev. Seun Adeoye, said the state government directive came too late to allow full compliance by their members. 

According to him, the initial directive of the state government was that a minimum of 50 people would be allowed to worship on Sunday and “this same message was fully delivered to the Church leaders and our members.”

He said: “For a new directive to be issued at the wee hours of Saturday indicates that Osun State Government has another plan that is difficult to explain.”

Also, a cleric at the Methodist Church, Fiwasaye Area of Osogbo, Israel Oyede, said in order to comply with the state government directive, the church leaders sent out early morning text messages to all members of the church to keep indoor and observe the Sunday service in their respective homes.

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