The Lagos State government asked churches to resume fully this Sunday (August 9, 2020), but the leadership of some churches exercised caution in doing so.
At Archbishop Vinning Memorial Church Cathedral (AVMCC) Ikeja GRA, where our source worshipped, the number of church service increased to four (4). No children service.
Maximum time of 2 hours per church service adhered. No worshipper was allowed into the church auditorium without wearing face mask; and security men ensured hands were thoroughly washed at the entrances to the church premises.
Worshippers were encouraged to register online ahead of Sunday’s service where chose preferred service time (7am, 9am, 11 am and 6pm) to attend. They administrators ensured attendance per church service was at 50 percent capacity.
They also pegged attendance per service at not more than 500 worshippers in the over 2000 capacity church auditorium. Before Covid-19, the cathedral church had 3 services (7am, 10am and 6pm) recording from 1,200 to 2000 worshippers for 7am and 10am while the 6pm had about 200 worshippers. Inside the auditorium, hand sanitizer were made available as well.
Worshipers used different entry points into the auditorium for each church service and exited from different points after each service. This was to discourage those who usually wait to exchange pleasantries with friends after church service.
Windows were all open with just fans, no air-conditioners. Worshippers observed social distancing in the sitting arrangement. It was a maximum of persons per seat as against the 8 to 10 persons before Covid-19. Holy Communion was administered without contact with each other including the priests.
In his sermon, the Bishop of Lagos West Diocese, Right Rev. Dr James Odedeji, noted that the Church cannot ignore the guideline issued by the Government, because “the Church as an institution is under the regulation of the Government”.