COVID-19: Comply with lockdown, Kiagama tasks Christians


The Catholic Bishop of Abuja Archdiocese, Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama, has urged Christian faithful to comply with the stay-at-home order by the federal government aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

Kaigama stated this while fielding questions from journalists after celebrating a televised Palm Sunday Mass at the Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Pro-Catherdal, Area 3, Garki, Abuja.  

He said as patriotic citizens Catholics must comply with the order because the scriptures urge obedience to constituted civil authorities.

“As the Holy Week begins Catholics should key into the mood. It’s a sober period and since people cannot move about freely due to the stay-at-home order and being patriotic citizens we must comply.

“We get some Catholics and Christians who say who is the government to tell us what to do with our faith but we must apply reason to faith.

“If there is a pandemic that will wipe all of us away and we insist that we must gather because God is greater than the government and so on then we are not obeying even the scriptures because we are told to obey constituted civil authorities

“And I beg Nigerians to realise that this is a passing moment, this is a crisis that will definitely pass with the aggression I see the federal government is trying to tackle it and even the global community is trying to tackle it I am sure we shall overcome

“Let them be at peace, whether you come to church or not the important thing is pray, the important thing is have a spiritual communion with you God and use your time creatively not to stay home quarrelling and fighting with the family and feeling bored, use the time very well praying and doing good work.”

According to him, “The disease has reduced us to one level. The mighty and small nations have all been reduced to the same level with all feeling the hit and unable to do much about it.

“The pandemic has taught us that we must come together to conquer the ills of the society. All nations, big or small, developed and undeveloped, poor and rich, have seen that technology cannot do much. Everyone is running from pillar to post in search of safety.

“Clearly, it is a new beginning for humanity. It means we must return to the golden rule of love and respect for one another. Above all, it has shown that God is on the throne and all must return to Him.”

He urged Christians to pray for an end to the pandemic and those saddled with implementing the stay-at-home order to handle Nigerians with respect and civility.

Kaigama commended the media for leading the fight against the spread of the virus, stating that the sacrifices of journalists have made them a great asset to the country.

“The media has remained our great bridge, getting relevant and authentic information to link those at home with those on the field in the collective war against the pandemic. “God will continue to bless the journalists and strengthen them in their roles of building a strong society fortified with the right information to make informed decisions,” he said.

The archbishop also prayed God to reward and bless medical workers who were sacrificing their comfort, and even lives, to give professional help to the sick in the fight to rid Nigeria of the pandemic.

“Even though it is a tragedy, this period is also a providential one in the sense that we are learning to trust God and rely on Him more than before.

“God has the final word, not man, whether he is a president or a well-endowed scientist. Man cannot be omnipotent as God. If we served God partially, haphazardly or indifferently in the past, we must develop a much deeper spiritual communion in the solitude of our homes,” he said.

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