“So Fellow Ghanaians, with effect from Friday 5th June, we will begin the stage one of the process of easing restrictions. An abridged format for religious services can commence. Twenty-Five percent (25%) attendance with a maximum number of One Hundred congregants can worship at a time in church or at the mosque, with a mandatory one metre rule of social distancing between congregants.
In addition to the mandatory wearing of masks for all persons at all times in churches and mosque, a register of names and contact details of all members and hand washing facilities must be provided, with a maximum duration of one hour for each service’ President Akuffo Addo said this on his 10th update to the nation.
Additionally, the president in his 14th update to the nation extended the hours to be spent during religious meetings. Our search from many religious bodies and leaders especially churches indicates that, there is still a low turnout in membership attendance from the very day the president eased the restrictions.
According to some pastors, follow ups and phone calls have been made to members in their quest to ease their fear in attracting the virus when they visit the church premises.
Additionally, some churches decided not to hold meetings in their auditoriums but rather embarked on evangelism to bring back their members, some say their efforts has been successful, others say it hasn’t been easy for them but are optimistic.
Our reporter, visited Apostle Augustine Ekuban, who is the Area Head Pastor of an international church (name withheld) in Accra – Nima to further appreciate the low-belting of membership attendance in church.
Speaking to the Head Pastor Thursday August 6, 2020, he said “We knew the ban on churches would affect us adversely, but for the spread of Covid-19 we had to comply. The rate at which the virus was moving and heightened and intensified the fear and panic in members, and as you can see they still find it difficult to come to church. One thing I want to tell members and all believers is that, the President’s decision to open for church activities was definitely born out of proper consultation that will ensure safety for all.
Again, as humans we wake up early in the morning, put on our face mask to our work places to find ends meet and to take care of our families. All these are physical activities and safety measures that can keep us going, but coming to church or being active in faith is another layer of protection, the church provides water, soaps, tissue papers, hand sanitizers and observes all the social distancing protocols. In view of this, your presence in church beefs-up your level of faith, help you become more active in prayer and increases your spiritual protection”.
He added that, “I encourage all believers to wake up in faith and do not be stolen by the lies of the devil, for we are in abnormal times. Your stay at home with the reason of contracting the virus at church places only exacerbates the situation. Make time to go to church, listen to the word of God and improve upon your spirituality”.
Currently president Akuffo Addo has increased the duration of religious gatherings to two hours and this received great applauds by all believers.
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