Christians in Osun, on Sunday, expressed displeasure over their inability to celebrate Palm Sunday due to the lockdown order by the state government to stop the spread of Coronavirus.
Some of the Christians, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Osogbo, said that they were denied the joy of Palm Sunday because of the pandemic.
NAN reports that Palm Sunday is the Sunday preceding Easter when Jesus Christ entered into Jerusalem.
Palm Sunday is celebrated in the Christendom symbolically through processions, with Christians holding palm fronds in their hands.
Mrs Funke Ojo, a member of a Pentecostal church, said this would be the first time of not celebrating Palm Sunday since she was born.
Ojo said due to the lockdown in some states, her church did not open for service and that the Palm Sunday procession was cancelled.
“It’s very painful but we pray God to fight the Coronavirus battle for us”, she said.
A member of Anglican Church, Mr Peter Olayemi, also said that Palm Sunday was a day he had always looked forward to before the Easter celebrations.
Olayemi, who noted that he always enjoyed the procession with the waving of palm fronds, said it was sad that he could not do same this year due to Coronavirus.
“It is painful that we could not celebrate Palm Sunday this year. It is one of the periods I always look forward to, but Coronavirus has denied us of that opportunity this year.
Mr Augustus Okafor, a member of the Catholic Church, said Palm Sunday was a day that no Catholic member would want to miss.
Okafor said it was, however, unfortunate that Coronavirus had denied Christians worldwide the opportunity to celebrate it.
He said 2020 would be a year that Christians would not forget in a hurry, because of their inability to celebrate Palm Sunday and indeed, Easter.
NAN reports that Gov. Gboyega Oyetola of Osun had, on March 29, announced a total lockdown of the state, effective from midnight of March 31, as part of measures to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the state.
There are currently 20 confirmed Coronavirus cases in Osun, as announced by the Nigeria Centre For Disease Control (NCDC).