Covid-19: Churches in Rivers split into sessions to observe social distancing
Most churches in Rivers had not more than 50 members in each worship session in compliance with the rule on social distancing by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in combating the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some leaders of the churches, who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Port Harcourt, said that the church was committed to the fight against the dreaded disease.
Mr James Ata, Senior pastor, School Road branch, Deeper Life Bible Church in Port Harcourt, said that his branch received directive from the headquarters in Lagos urging them on effective distancing pattern.
“We resolved to split into three worship sessions instead of the normal combined single service formation usually observed during Sunday services
“As part of measures to observe social distancing and to further curb the spread of the corona virus (COVID-19) pandemic in worship centers, we hosted up to three services today with about 46 worshipers in each session.
“Our crowd control unit did a great job by ensuring that we didn’t host more than 50 persons in each of our services.
“Our branch is not too large so we were able to manage the crowd effectively,” Ata said.
However, other churches with very large congregation ended up conducting over eight worship sessions on hourly schedule.
The Omega Power Ministries (OPM), Redeemed Christian Church and others were amongst churches that hosted several sessions so as to be able to accommodate as much worshippers as possible.
NAN also gathered that the routine house fellowships usually observed on Sunday evenings by most Pentecostal churches have been suspended till further notice.
Mrs Better Ben, one of the home cell coordinators of Joyful Assembly Ministries said she received directive from the church headquarters suspending routine home fellowships till further notice.
“The church is adopting this strategy on social distancing, prayers as well as other sensitisation methods in the fight against the corona virus pandemic,” she said.
NAN also gathered that the Catholic churches in the State have suspended all masses till further notice (NAN)