The Lagos Government through the Lagos State Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board (LSCPWB) has opted for holy pilgrimage to Jordan instead of Jerusalem for its forthcoming May/June Pilgrimage due to Israel’s refusing to open it’s border for pilgrimage.
Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Anofiu Olarewaju Elegushi disclosed this during the Lagos State Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board Stakeholders/Sensitization Forum held for its intending Pilgrims at the Chapel of Christ the Light, Alausa, Ikeja on Thursday.
Elegushi explained that the State Government in conjunction with the Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC) decided to embarked on Pilgrimage to Jordan instead of Jerusalem after investigations revealed that israel might not open it’s border for pilgrimage soon.
Also officials of the Ministry were in Jordan during the routine State of Readiness visit to ascertain the level of preparedness of Jordan to host pilgrimage exercise.
This, the Commissioner noted, made the board to settle for Jordan.
“The Prophecy of our Lord Jesus cuts across many settlements, many countries not only Jerusalem. If we go through our Bible we will see the role of other countries like Jordan even Egypt. Christianity is not all about Jerusalem ” Elegushi noted.
“We decided to look at options but we cannot just make decisions without your consent, you paid your money, we don’t put the horse before the cart, we want to know your mind and whatever you, the stakeholders decide is what we will present to the Governor.” The Commissioner explained.
Elegushi stated that the ministry decided to hold on to the memo written to the Governor on the decision reached to tour Jordan until after the Stakeholders meeting.
He also used the forum to thank the intending Pilgrims for entrusting their funds with the State Government.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Mrs Adebunmi Adekanye in her address noted that pilgrimage to Jordan is a worthwhile experience.
“Before now I heard people say they go to Jordan from the UK actually and I wonder what do they go to do in Jordan but now I have gone, have seen and believed. I believe it is going to be the same thing for you,” she said.
Earlier the Board Secretary, Mrs Florence Gbafe said testimonies has abound after their visit to Jordan during the State of Readiness and it has been spiritually rewarding hence she encouraged the intending Pilgrims to be rest assured of a spiritually filled exercise.
The director of Operations, Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), Rev. Amos Yohanna during his presentation on Pilgrimage to Jordan stated that seeing that Israel may likely not open its borders for pilgrimage for now they opted for Jordan in accordance with the law that established NCPC which says “We are allowed to go to any part of the world where it is written in the Bible, where Jesus had worked. The same law allows us to go to Rome, Greece and Turkey, etc”
According to him most of the Israelites lived and spend most of their lives across the Jordan which is now called the kingdom of Jordan.
“It used to be one country, there were no boundaries the prophet were moving across River Jordan and receiving messages from God and even Jesus himself crossed River Jordan many times” he noted.
He mentioned some of the historical sites to be visited in Jordan to include Pella; ancient Penuel where Jacob, brother of Esau wrestled all night with God and his name was changed to Israel; Mount Nebo, where Moses looked across to the promise land and later died and was buried.
Others sites to be visited includes Bethany beyond the Jordan which is the traditional site of Jesus baptism; Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth; the land of Uz, the city of salt where job lived among others.
Yohanna also stated that the flag off for the Jordan Pilgrimage is scheduled for May 29, 2021 in Jos while Lagos will commence it’s airlifting in the 1st week of June 2021.
Majority of the intending Pilgrims during the question and answer session thanked the State Government for the consultation forum as it helped clear the air on some grey areas while showing their willingness to embark on Pilgrimage to Jordan.