Crisis is brewing at St. Paul’s Millennium Anglican Church, Odo Owa Ekiti, Ekiti State as some members allegedly picketed it last Sunday.
It was learnt that the members sealed all entrances to the church and prevented worshippers from going in for service.
The tension was said to have been caused by the alleged demotion of the Vicar of the church, Rev. Mike Ogunniyi, by the Bishop of Ekiti West Anglican Diocese, Bishop Oludare Oke.
It was learnt that the demotion was caused by Oke’s opposition to the way the reverend administered a N5m donation to the church by Governor Kayode Fayemi.
The governor donated N5m to the church on January 25 during the funeral for the late Archbishop Abiodun Adetiloye, who was an indigene of the town.
Fayemi had said the money should be used for the furtherance of the gospel which Adetiloye lived and died for.
It was learnt that the bishop had ordered that the money should be deposited in a special fixed account, as an endowment fund.
The bishop’s order was said to have been given in anticipation that the money would yield an interest which would also be useful to the church.
It was gathered that Ogunniyi, in consultation with the leaders of the church, however, ignored the order and bought a N3m bus for evangelism, spent N1m on the renovation of the church and deposited the balance in the church’s account.
The actions were said to have provoked the bishop, who slammed him with a demotion from the position of archdeacon to a canon “for spending the church’s money without an approval”.
A source, who claimed to be a member of the church told PUNCH Metro in Ado Ekiti on Tuesday, that the news of the demotion of the vicar prompted members of the church to seal the church and prevent worshippers from assembling for last Sunday service.
He said, “The crisis in the church also caused tension in the community. But some community leaders intervened before it could escalate.”
The church has, however, denied that the donation caused a crisis.
A statement by a member of the Church’s council, Mr. George Ogunjeta, said, “There is no crisis in St. Paul’s Millennium Anglican Church. Services have been holding in the church uninterrupted.”