Ban on church activities will greatly affect ‘church coffers’ – Pastor laments
As the government rolls out drastic measures that will keep churches shut for at least a month, a member of the clergy is worried about its impact on the coffers of churches.
The Lead Pastor of Cedar Mountain Chapel Assemblies of God Church, Pastor, Rev. Dr. Stephen Wengam, has indicated that the empty auditorium in the coming weeks would cripple his church’s finances as he weighed the church’s financial obligation to its employees.
In an interview with Accra-based Citi FM, monitored by theghanareport.com, Rev. Dr Wengam said the church would comply with the new directive, but also lamented bitterly about how this could affect the ‘church coffers’.
“It’s going to affect us. Seriously! Don’t forget I have about seven members of staff, utility bills, maintenance fees, and other expenses. How is the church going to pay for all this,” he said worriedly.
“We pay all these people using tithes and offerings. Some churches have even taken loans from banks to undertake various church projects, how are they expecting the churches to cope within this short period to time,” he asked.
President Akufo-Addo on Sunday announced a ban on all forms of public gathering in the country, as the country records six cases of the dreaded coronavirus. The ban affects schools, churches, mosques and all other public events that attract crowds.
Although most churches reacted to the public health emergency on Sunday by providing facilities for handwashing and hand sanitisers, the President believed the new measures would tame a quantum leap in infected persons as the Ghana Health trace persons who had contacts with the infected six.
But Rev Dr Wengam has counted the losses, stressing that “definitely this new directive is going to affect us.”
He also mentioned that although the church had mobile money accounts for believers who streamed live on the church’s website, “it will be quite difficult.”
“You know in this part of the world, how many people have a stable internet connection to even watch during live streaming,” he quizzed.
He, however, mentioned that the church management has taken the necessary measures to ensure the ‘flock’ remain safe.
Meanwhile, the Ghana Catholic Bishops conference, as well as the Methodist Church of Ghana, had earlier issued statements, indicating compliance to the President’s directive.