Nigerian Churches Going Online Over Coronavirus — Here’s Where To Livestream
After the Nigerian government's ban on religious gatherings, religious houses are turning to the Internet
Some churches have provided alternative platforms where worshippers can live-stream their services. But others say any religious gathering must be limited to 50 people.
The move follows the ban on large gatherings and open worship announced by various state governments amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Nigeria has 89 cases of the infection as of today, 28th March 2020 but the country is not taking any chances.
Here is why: In some of the countries worst hit by the infection, early cases were linked to social and religious gatherings, such as in Iran where its religious capital was first hit.
Coronavirus Makes Nigerian Churches Go Online After The Government's Ban
While the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) asked members to go online or hold home cell services where they cannot afford the former, the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) said it will not hesitate to suspend congregational prayers in the mosques if it becomes necessary, so that Muslims can pray inside their houses.
Samson Ayokunle, CAN president, said in a statement where it is not possible; particularly for churches who do not have an online system, services can be broken into shifts of not more than 50 members in each shift.
The Daystar Christian Centre announced from the weekend of March 21. Daystar will not hold a physical gathering for worshippers at any of their locations until further notice.
“The Daystar experience will henceforth hold online on Saturdays (6 pm), Sundays (7 am, 8.45 am, 10.30 am, 12.15 pm) and Wednesdays (6 pm) only on (listed) platforms,” the church said in a statement from Sam and Nike Adeyemi, its senior pastors.
In addition to its website, the church listed its pages across all the social media as where worshippers can live-stream their services.
See Where To Worship Online
Similarly, the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries (MFM) announced it was shutting down its churches; and suspending house fellowships until further notice.
“Members are to be encouraged to hook up to an online page on which ministration on video will be streamed live from the International Headquarters covering the period of the interim arrangement, connecting through https:ntainoffire.org/messages,” a statement from Gbesan Adebambo, its assistant general overseer read.
“Other online platforms are; MFM youtube streaming faith prayer, azure and audio-only prayer, MFM facebook channel and MFM Television.”
The Goodnews Baptist Church in Lagos is also adopting the same measures though not entirely new.
The church has been live-streaming its services, which can be followed here.
The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) is also restricting worshippers of more than 50 people. The church is asking them to follow the church’s programme when it broadcasts live.
Folorunsho Odesola, RCCG assistant general-overseer of administration and personnel; had said in a memo that the church’s pastors should not allow gatherings of more than 50 persons.
In addition to following the live broadcast of its service on TV and its YouTube page, worshippers were also asked to join the house fellowship centres.