Oyo State Chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has directed all Christians in the State to agree with the State Covid-19 Task Force order on shutdown of religious centers, which include churches.

Pastor Benjamin Akanmu, the State Chairman of CAN, said that, it is very important to discuss and make official statement to guide the management of different churches and fellowship centers considering various striking news that is flowing in the social media.

He said that Christians in the state must agree with government order for Sunday service.

Akanmu said this in a statement, “In a situation like this, it is part of leadership roles, to clear air on misleading information circulating around to safe followers from falling victims of fake news or misinformation which may eventually subject them to severe punishment. As we all know that ignorance is not an excuse in the court of law.

“The federal government has done the appropriate thing by relaxing the measures to allow each state make its decision based on the current situation and report on Covid-19 pandemic in a particular state. Moreso, state has autonomy to decide on how best to govern it’s subjects.

"As at today, the decision of Oyo government is to retain the restrictions earlier imposed on lockdown of religious centres, imposition of curfew from 8pm to 6am, social gathering should not exceed number of people allowed by the government. As residents of Oyo state we all should adhere strictly to the state directives,” he warned.

“As Christians, it’s behoves of us to honour and obey government, regardless of the motive behind the decision or order or policy (either in good or bad faith). Even in a situation where government deliberately work against church, God did not permit us to disobey or involve in violence.

"The best way to show our anger against enemies that brought Covid-19 pandemic on us is to humble ourselves before God. Confess our sins, turn away completely from all evil and ask for the mercy of God.

"If we sincerely call for God’s intervention at this point, He will surely answer and set our state and nation free from the boundage of lockdown brought on us by the pandemic. Anything aside that is not of God and CAN will never support it. After all, it is the building that is lockdown, the spirit of Christ that dwell in us can not be silent.

“Everything happens for good for those who trust in God. This is a period to develop ourself spiritually to be able to confront the rulers of this world for the Bible says our warfare are not canal but strong and mighty to pull down the stronghold of the enemies.

"That’s why as Christian leaders we train followers of Christ to be adequately equipped with the words of God, prayer and walk according to the righteousness of God. Jesus did not call the pastors alone, he called everyone, He says, “go ye into the world and preach the gospel”, in other words, lockdown shouldn’t be an excuse to be far from God.

“For no reason should any Christian go against the law and order of the government. I have the believe that the Lord will return all our losses during the Covid-19 period in multiple folds in Jesus name. No Christian should go against the law and order of the state government,” he said.

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