Following the numerous controversies trailing the COVID-19 vaccine and the perceived reluctant of many people to take the jabs, the Senior Pastor of Trinity House Church, Pastor Ituah Ighodalo has called for the creation of more awareness, stressing that knowledge, and information were needed to address the fears of every person and then encourage as many as possible to take these vaccine.
Speaking yesterday as a guest on ARISE NEWS Channel, a THISDAY broadcast arm, Ighodalo cited a quotation where the Bible said the “my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”
The revered cleric, who spoke on the role of the church in the current vaccine drive to address the current pandemic faced around the world, noted that the problem of whether or not to take the vaccines is a problem of knowledge.
“So, I think that the first thing that needs to be done is to compel the church and also the leaders of our nation to educate the masses enough on the issue of vaccines, answering the questions of the people, who are thinking that the vaccine is a deliberate effort to wipe out the human population. We need to prove that this is not so. “Other people think it is the sign of 666 dragons in the Bible. We need to address that and prove that this is not so. Other people think that the vaccine will have a negative effect on people’s health; we need to address that and prove scientifically that this is not so.”
Ighodalo explained further that the problem right now was that a lot of questions were not being properly addressed, adding that there were so much rumours flying all over the places.
“As for some churches, they believe in divine healing and would not support taking of the vaccines but if they check well, they would also know that God provided knowledge for healing. God said: ‘Is there no balm in Gilead; why are my people sick? It means that God knows that from time to time, you need a balm; you need some medicine. So, God himself provides divine knowledge for healing”.
He said therefore that there was an urgent need to speak to the fears of people.
“We need to speak emphatically and explain to people what these vaccines are all about so that people can now out boldly and get these vaccines.
Ighodalo who had personally taken the jab, noted further that: “I prayed about it, thought about it, considered it and then one day I woke up and said I am going to take the vaccine. It was a clear direction from God to go and take the vaccine and I have explained to people in the church that God provides knowledge so that we have to deal with knowledge and understand what is going on and end all the rumour mongering and the little gossips here and there.”
The cleric further appealed to his fellow pastors to do proper research, get the knowledge and stop misinforming people or improperly educating people on guess work, instinct and position.
“And then let the researcher prove to us what they have done within this one year to ensure that the vaccines they got out there can do what it needs to do and let them also tell us if it can give us 70 or 60 per cent protection, or even 50 per cent protection. Let us understand that and let us know what we are getting”, he added.
Ighodalo also debunked the claims by the federal government that churches in Nigeria flouted COVID-19 protocols, insisting that the government should rather focus on educating the vast number of citizens who moved about without masks and sanitizers.
“To speak to the issue of whether the churches are the ones going against COVID-19 protocols, I regret to say that I don’t quite agree. I think the government has bigger fish to fry,” Ighodalo said.
“If you go to any of the markets, any of the bus-stops, any of the busy places, people don’t even wear masks. So, those gatherings of people are much more than the gatherings you have in any church from time to time, and in fairness to most churches they have tried; a few no doubt, have flouted the rules here and there but most of them have tried to keep to the COVID protocols.”
“So, the huge churches did their best to observe these things. Therefore, it’s not fair to say that it is the churches that are flouting COVID-19 guidelines”, he added