The Lead Pastor of the Cedar Mountain Chapel of the Assemblies of God Church at East Legon, Reverend Stephen Yenusom Wengam, says the ban on all social gatherings in the wake of the Coronavirus outbreak in Ghana will have a negative impact on the finances of churches.

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According to Rev Wengam, the four-week ban will impact the payments of tithes and offerings of the members of various churches.

“It’s going to affect us seriously because how are we going to pay the bills?,” Rev Wengam quizzed in a radio interview with Accra based Citi FM which went out on Monday [March 16, 2020] to seek a reaction on how the President’s directive was going to impact on churches.

Reacting, Rev Wengam said: “Don’t forget, I have about seven members of staff, how are we going to pay them? Because we pay them through tithe and offering, utility bills, how are we going to pay? Maintenance?

“I mean, some [churches] have taken loans. We have finished paying our loans but other churches took loans from the bank to do projects, how are they going to pay the loans? So, definitely it’s going to affect us. Of course, online we have this MoMo [Mobile Money] thing, normally when people are watching a livestream we scroll the numbers and then encourage them to give… But you know, in our part of the world, how many people have internet connection? So, definitely it’s going to affect us seriously financially.”

Strategies

Rev Wengam said the Cedar Mountain Chapel would roll out some strategies to keep its members alive spiritually. He mentioned that church services would be streamed live on Facebook during the period of the ban.