FOLLOWING the recent directives by the Lagos and Ogun state governments placing a ban on all religious meetings and gatherings of more than 50 worshippers in Lagos, as part of the precautionary steps towards managing the further spread of the Coronavirus disease, the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN and the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG have endorsed the new measures to save the lives of Nigerians.
The Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN, last night okayed any precautionary measure to protect the lives of Nigerians from the scourge of Corona virus.
National President of PFN, Rev. Felix Omobude told our correspondent in a telephone discussion when asked to respond to Lagos and Ogun State governments ban on all religious gatherings of over 50 persons in Lagos, said its a welcome development.
According to the PFN helmsman if the action of the state government is to protect Nigerians from the source its a welcome development.
“If this government is taking measures for the benefit of the people, I am for it. The health of Nigerians is paramount to everyone of us and we must endeavor to be supportive of any move in that direction,” Omobude stated.
In a similar development, the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, has also issued a new guideline for seemless Sunday worship in the affected two states.
A memo titled: “Slight alteration in the mode of service for parishes in Lagos and Ogun states” from the Assistant General Overseer (Admin & Personnel) Pastor Johnson Folorunsho Odesola and addressed to pastors-in-charge of regions and provinces in Lagos dated March 18, 2020 outlined the church
Pastor Odesola said: “We refer to the directive from the Lagos and Ogun state governments placing a ban on all religious meetings and gatherings of more than 50 worshippers in Lagos, as part of the precautionary steps towards managing the further spread of the Corona virus disease.
“In line with this directive from the government, the mission authority has instructed as follows:
1. Parishes that have an average of attendance of 50 members or less can hold their services without any alteration or changes.
2. Parishes that have average attendance above 50 members are directed to make use of their House Fellowship centres to run simultaneous services with the main church.
3. Parishes that have the facility to run more than one service can also do so, under the strict directive that worshippers won’t exceed 50 people per service.
4. One supervising minister and an usher could be seconded to each Centre for collation of necessary reports (attendance, New converts, New comers, etc)
5. All centers are requested to connect to Dove Television to join the live broadcast from the General Overseer during the period.
Continuing, Pastor Odesola informed the senior pastors that the arrangement will remain in operation for the next few weeks, based on the position of the Government.
“You are therefore requested to convey the assurances of the continued prayer of the General Overseer to members, while also encouraging them not to panic in the face of ongoing crisis because God promised us victory over every battle at the start of this year,” the AGO in charge of Administration, maintained.
Earlier on Wednesday, our correspondent confirmed that an annual Power Conference Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), First Born Family (FBF) scheduled for Sunday to hold its 32nd anniversary Power Conference tagged: ‘Emerge” at the Tafawa Balewa Square with the General Overseer of the church, Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, ministering became the first casualty of the governmental ban.
Another memo from one of the provinces under Region 19, the hosts of the open door crusade at the TBS, Lagos said Pastor Adeboye in obedience to the prevailing circumstances, has postponed the programme that would have attracted thousands, slated for Sunday, March 22, at Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos.
It is an annual programme organized by the First Born Family, RCCG, Region 19, Acme Road, Ogba in Lagos, with the theme: Breaking Barriers.
The postponement followed the ban on all religious gatherings of over 50 people by Lagos State Government on Wednesday.
A statement by one of the Provinces under Region 19 reads: “Greetings. Please, be informed that Daddy G.O. (Pastor Adeboye) has instructed us to POSTPONE the EMERGE programme that was to take place on Sunday until a later date.
In Daddy’s words: “We are to obey the laws of the land”.
“Please kindly give this information the widest publicity.
God bless you. Pastor Debo Akande.”
Feelers reaching Vanguard indicate that the power conference designed to assist the army of poor persons in the Lagos Island through the free meal programme of the First Born Family in addition to the spiritual and physical healing to members of the congregation through the ministration will be on hold until the situation normalizes.
The head of the First Born Family and the pastor-in-charge of Region 19 of the church, Pastor Brown Oyitso said due to the prevailing circumstances in the country especially with the scourge of Corona virus diseases the programme has to be put on hold and appealed to Nigerians for understanding that the RCCG is a law-abiding church organization that will not flout the laws of the land.
“While we pray to God, the ultimate healer of diseases to lift this scourge as He did in 2014 with a similar situation and dealt a deadly blow on ebola. We are duty bound to adhere strictly to directives of government on measures to contain this coronavirus which is spreading across the nations of the world,” Pastor Oyitso who is also in charge of the church’s Missions, prayed.