The senior pastor of one of Philadelphia’s largest churches said he is fine after recently contracting the novel coronavirus.
Sitting at his desk wearing a black tee shirt with the words “Stay Woke,” the Rev. Alyn Waller of Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church, gave a convincing update on his health, in addition to providing a report on church operations, during a Facebook Live post on Tuesday evening.
“Let me thank all of you for your kind words and expressions,” Waller said. “For everyone that has reached out I don’t take it lightly. The love I feel from the church; from this city. I thank God for all of the pastors that prayed on Sunday morning. Thank you so very, very much.”
Waller announced last Thursday morning that he had tested positive for COVID-19. He announced it during a Facebook Live post that he got tested last Monday when the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium set up a community testing site at Enon.
“I am well, and I thank God for this season,” Waller said on Tuesday evening. “I believe it is and was for an assignment. I believe that because of the positive test it put me in places to speak to things that needed to be spoken to. So I thank God for that. And I thank God that I feel well and everything will be alright.”
Enon stopped holding physical services in March and livestreamed praise and worship and Waller’s sermons from the church building due to the pandemic.
With a membership of 15,000, there’s no information as to how many from the church may have contracted the virus. It was reported 350 were tested last Monday through the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium at the church’s location in Mount Airy.
“I want you to know that we began today [Tuesday] with a very specific commercial grade cleaning of our church,” Waller said. “We even found areas where the virus was alive and this company could test and look and clean everything. So church is closed for the entire week. They will be finished with East [Mount Airy campus] by the end of the week, then we will do a walk through at West [Germantown campus].
Waller stated Enon leadership will make sure members are protected and ready to come back to church when it is deemed safe.
“We know pretty much for the month of May we are going to continue to do as we are doing right now,” Waller said. “I encourage you to join us on Sunday morning by way of livestream, Facebook and the website. And I encourage you to meet me here every Tuesday evening for Family Fellowship then join us on Saturday evening at 5 o’clock for prayer. And we are still feeding from West, everyday, Monday through Thursday, from 10 to 12. And that will be our continued approach for this time.
“And so I thank you,” Waller continued. “Please keep praying. And we look forward to what is going to happen when all this is over because we know there’s a testimony coming out of it. And we know that lives will change and or be saved. We still have a lot of praying to do. Please pray for those who are suffering and please pray for those who are infected and affected by this virus. And we pray for the epidemiologists that are working to look for vaccinations and working to look for a cure.”
During his livestream, Waller talked of a Saturday town hall event on the importance of voting in this year’s election. He didn’t give details on time or location.
“If you ever thought there was a time to vote it is right now,” Waller said. “At the town hall you will learn the different ways in which you can vote — absentee ballots, and even voting online. There are a number of political officials as well as community activists who will be coming together.
“I expect you to be a part of that because we have got to make a change in this country,” he added. “The reason we are dealing with the severity of what we are dealing with is because of lack of proper leadership at the national level. The testing is not enough, it is not adequate, and it won’t be adequate for some time. And we have to keep pressing it and keep lifting our voices. And when you get the chance you have got to make a change.”
Waller then began the Bible study portion of the livestream, teaching from the Book of Revelation, during a period called “Tribulation,” providing at times analogies to the current pandemic. He ended the broadcast saying the church is protected by God.
“We are going to win against COVID-19,” Waller said. “Hopefully all of us are going to reorder our lives to what really matters and what really counts so don’t give up. God is not through with you.”