Adeboye, Kumuyi, Olukoya comply with restrictions on gathering, Oyedepo flouts order

Senior clerics including the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye; Sam Adeyemi of Daystar Christian Centre; the  General Superintendent of the Deeper Christian Life Ministry, Pastor William Kumuyi and Dr Daniel Olukoya of Mountain of Fires and Miracles Ministries complied with the orders of Ogun and Lagos state governments banning gathering of more than 50 persons.
But the Living Faith Church Worldwide, Ota, Ogun State held physical services despite the orders.
Adeboye during the online service said coronavirus would subside after God had proved His point.
The 78-year-old cleric said, during his sermon from the studio of Dove TV, which was broadcast live to all members of the church via Social Media channels, that the world was on a compulsory holiday.
Daystar Christian Centre also complied with the Lagos State Government’s directive. Its services were streamed online via its website and Facebook page and shown on television channels.
Also,  Olukoya’s church broadcast a previous sermon via its social media channels to its members worldwide.
The church, later in a video showed an empty auditorium of the church’s headquarters in Yaba area of Lagos. It stressed that no ‘physical’ service was held at the auditorium on Sunday, adding that the church would not flout the directives of its host – Lagos State Government.
It was gathered that the Deeper Christian Life Ministry divided its branches, which had more than 50 members to worship at different venues, while branches with less than 50 members held services as usual but maintained high hygiene practices.
The Living Faith Church Worldwide, Ota, Ogun State and Dunamis Church International, Abuja however, held Sunday services.
The Presiding Bishop of the Living Faith Church Worldwide, David Oyedepo, led the physical’ services in Ota, with thousands of worshipers in attendance.
Oyedepo led the congregation in prayers preceding his sermon titled “Winning the war against coronavirus”.
He said, “According to how we have prayed, the siege is over. The same way Ebola went away, this is going away. The same God that helped us that time is still alive, he will  help us again.”
The church, had in a memo dated March 20 and written by the First Vice President of the LFC, Bishop David Abioye, asked branches of the church all over the world to comply with restriction orders in their locations.
It was however gathered that another memo was issued late on Saturday asking members to come to church service.
The first memo read, “In view of the spread of COVID-19 pandemic across the globe which has necessitated the temporary shutdown of activities within nations of the world to curb its further spread, all stations are hereby informed that the Mothers’ Day celebration earlier scheduled for Sunday, 22nd March is hereby postponed indefinitely.”
But a second memo, which was also signed by Abioye, read, “Following recent release from the office of the CAN National President as per attached, our regular Sunday service(s)  shall hold tomorrow (Sunday) across various states of the nation. To this effect, every assembly should take necessary precaution.”
In a document signed by Christian Association of Nigeria General Secretary, Joseph Bade, the Christian body said “pastors should allow people to worship and use the occasion to create awareness” on the virus while maintaining recommended precautions by health authorities.
It was gathered that the Living Faith Church Worldwide, Ota, held five separate services with thousands of people in attendance.
Besides the Living Faith Church Worldwide, Ota, no fewer than 12 other churches in Abeokuta and Sagamu violated the Ogun State Government’s directive.
The commander of the state Task Force on mass gathering, Toyin Afolaogun led his team to disperse worshippers in some of the churches for flouting the directive.
Afolaogun said his task force got to the Winners Chapel in Abeokuta at about 6:30am when hundreds of worshippers, who had assembled preparatory to early morning service, were dispersed.
He said the worshippers were told to hold a service only if they would comply with the directive, limiting number of worshippers to 50.
Afolaogun said, “We have recorded about 80 per cent compliance. The church that did not comply, we politely told them to comply accordingly.”
Dunamis Church International observed a physical service in its 10000 seater capacity Glory Dome auditorium along Airport Road in Abuja.
The church founded and overseen by Paul Enenche and his wife, Becky Enenche, tagged the service “Sensitisation Service” and release account details for “Online Offerings”.
Also, the Senior Pastor of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly, Abuja, Biodun Fatoyinbo, invited members of his church for a ‘physical’ worship service on Sunday, March 22.
But it was observed that Fatoyinbo, who came under scathing criticisms from social media users, did not broadcast the service online.

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