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Be transparent in managing COVID-19, Catholic bishop tells governments


Distributes food items to indigent parishioners
The Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Osogbo, Most Rev. John Akinkunmi Oyejola, has appealed to the federal and state governments to desist from shrouding the management of Coronavirus in secrecy.

Bishop Oyejola gave this charge in an address to mark the 25th anniversary of Catholic Diocese of Osogbo yesterday.

As part of activities marking the anniversary, the diocese distributed food items as palliative to indigent parishioners in the state.

The bishop, in his address titled, “Gratitude, Formation and Mission: Do Not Let Your Hearts Be Troubled,” said the efforts at containing the deadly disease should not become an alibi for denying the people freedom of communal religious worship.

He said the heart of many Nigerians had been troubled since the outbreak of COVID-19 because the scourge worsened the economic and financial challenges of the average citizens.


While commending the efforts of governments at containing the spread of the disease, the bishop urged them to be transparent with the management of the disease and assured that COVID-19 would be defeated in no distant future.

He said: “We commend the civil authorities for the spirited efforts they have put into the fight against coronavirus pandemic since its outbreak. Our passionate and frank appeal to them is that the management of this pandemic should wear genuine human face, must be transparent and should not become an alibi for denying the people freedom of communal religious worship beyond what is reasonably necessary.”

“The COVI-19 pandemic – a natural evil which is spread by human error, will become a footnote in the history of mankind, like other pandemics before its appearance in no distant future. We, however, must remain strong and deeply rooted in our faith in God who does not fail us, even when we do not have a complete understanding of some events in our human experience in this ephemeral world, our hearts must not be troubled because we have Christ.

“Undoubtedly, since the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic, hearts have been troubled because businesses have been stalled and freedom, including that of worship, have been curtailed significantly.

Speaking on the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the diocese, Oyejola said the Church had witnessed spiritual, numerical and physical growths since its creation, saying: “We stand today as witnesses to the sacrifices of the present generation to make the local church self-reliant and sufficient to remain a relevant and living religious organisation spiritually, pastorally and a credible collaborator with the civil society by providing standard education and quality healthcare delivery system in Osun State.”


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