In the midst of the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia, the Priest of the Archdiocese of Monrovia, Father McDonald Nah, says most Liberians no longer attend masses due to Ebola fear.
Father Nah said people in Liberia have gone in self-isolation because of the severity of the virus, especially those who have been in close proximity to someone who has died from the illness and are as resilient with the outbreak as they were following the country’s civil war more than a decade ago.
“People can’t even go to church,” Father McDonald Nah of the Archdiocese of Monrovia said when he spoke with the St. Louis Review newspaper of the St. Louis Archdiocese in the United States on Monday.
”Usually in Liberia, when someone is sick… they go around to visit with the sick. But they can’t visit them at all. It has created something they have never seen before. I was in Liberia during the war, and apart from people dying, we could visit. You could go places. But with this situation, you can’t at all”, Father Nah narrated.
The Liberian priest is currently studying Catholic education administration at St. Louis University in the U.S. and is expected to return to Liberia next summer after completing his studies. The Ebola outbreak in Liberia began since March, 2014 from neighboring Guinea and Sierra Leone, where the virus initially struck in West Africa, as the largest and most complex in history.
A small number of cases have also been reported in Lagos and Port Harcourt, Nigeria. Affected counties in Liberia include Bomi, Bong, Gbarpolu, Grand Bassa, Grand Cape Mount, Grand Kru, Lofa, Margibi, Maryland, Nimba, River Cess, River Gee, Sinoe, and Montserrado as well as the capital city, Monrovia.
Civil unrest and violence against aid workers have been reported in West Africa as a result of the outbreak. Liberia’s public health infrastructure is being severely strained as the outbreak spreads.