Enugu Anglican Bishop dares govt, holds church service

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Most Rev. Emmanuel Chukwuma, the Archbishop of the Enugu Province and Bishop of Enugu Anglican Diocese, on Sunday dared the government by holding normal church service and announced that the Province will not shut any of its branches over COVID-19 pandemic.

He said it was not right for the government to shut down churches and places of worship, adding that it was unfortunate and wrong to categorise church and worship centres with drinking parlours, night clubs, markets and companies.

Chukwuma said that churches belong to Jesus Christ and he alone has the power to shut it, adding that closing churches would mean giving the devil the opportunity to ravage the people and the country.

The cleric wondered why people should be stopped from “running to their God in worship in a time like now the whole world was in confusion, where would they run to for safety, help and deliverance?”

Reacting to the disruption of worship of some Anglican churches in Enugu, the Archbishop warned security operatives against stopping members of the Anglican Church from worshipping in their church buildings.

“I have told them not to try it again unless they want more trouble for themselves and their families. There is no way you can ask the church of God to stop when we need prayers to bring healing upon the land, especially when we are faced with a problem as serious as coronavirus that has defied every human solution.

“It is wrong on the government to send the police after worshippers. I think if they are serious, what they should do is to ensure that the hygiene protocol is kept, that the social distancing order is also kept while encouraging those at the altar to pray for the country out (of the pandemic).

“What can man do under this circumstance without God? What can even the President or our scientists do in this trying time without God? It is wrong for people to think that we will not find answers to what has befallen us through prayers. So, I want to warn that whoever is behind the disruption should stop in his own interest.

“The last thing I will do at this time is to close the doors of my church building. In my Cathedral, we worshipped today and we will observe all the Palm Sunday and Easter activities.

“I will worship on Monday, Thursday as well as the Easter Sunday. It will be sad on anybody who tried to stop us because. We’re doing what we are supposed to do.”