Category : Church of Nigeria

Anglican Bishop Alexander Ibezim argues that president Buhari is fighting corruption+terrorism with kid gloves

Bishop Ibezim, who spoke in his Presidential Charge at the 2ndSession of the 11th Synod of the Diocese, holding at St. Peters Church Amawbia, said that rather than fight corruption, the government was habouring actors in the field.

He said, “It does seem the fight against corruption for which this administration was voted into power has slowed down, if not jettisoned. People had expected prompt prosecution and incarceration of offenders, to deter others, but what we witnessed was a situation where some key officials of this administration were involved in unwholesome acts, capable of tarnishing the image of government.

“The latter did not respond effectively or looked the other way, thereby eroding the confidence of the people in the fight against corruption. A government that is serious in fighting corruption should not engage in lopsided appointments, reducing some sections of the country to second class citizens or entrenching ethnic chauvinism in its policies.”

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Posted in Anthropology, Church of Nigeria, Ethics / Moral Theology, Politics in General

Gafcon Chairman’s May 2018 Letter

My dear people of God,

Next month we are expecting almost 2,000 delegates to gather in Jerusalem for our third Global Anglican Future Conference. I know that those working so hard to organise this great undertaking are very much aware that ‘the time is short’, but as the Apostle Paul reminds the Corinthian church, this should always be our perspective. Jerusalem is the place where Christ rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, events which make the promise of his return sure and certain, and we shall gather as those who always live in the expectation of our Lord’s second appearing as King, Judge and Saviour.

To know that ‘the time is short’ helps to keep us from being distracted and to concentrate on what really matters.

Firstly, it means that the gospel is at the heart of all that we do. Our conference theme is ‘Proclaiming Christ Faithfully to the Nations’ and we shall celebrate the gospel in all its richness as the demonstration of the love and saving power of God in Jesus Christ. We shall be reminding one another that the gospel is not a message of merely human wisdom but the ‘gospel of God’ (Romans 1:1) which we have received. It is the work of God’s grace from beginning to end, but he has entrusted that task to us and we must press on to fulfil the apostolic mandate of the risen Christ to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19).

Secondly, knowing that the time is short keeps us focused on the purpose of the Church. Ecclesiastical institutions must serve the gospel. The gospel is not a brand to be adapted to serve institutions. We will therefore continue to endorse new missionary initiatives and jurisdictions where necessary to take forward the work of the gospel.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Ecclesiology, GAFCON, Soteriology, Theology: Evangelism & Mission, Theology: Scripture

(Sun Online) Nigerian Anglican Primates calls on Government to offer better security, criticizes idea of more armed self-defence

The clergyman said that the responsibility of security lies squarely on the shoulders of the government as that was, according to him, part of the social contract it entered into with the people.

Apparently referring to the call by some prominent Nigerians for the people to defend themselves, the Prelate said that a situation where everybody would have to carry arms to defend themselves would spell doom for the country.

The Primate made the call at the Cathedral of All Saints, Abakaliki, in an interview with newsmen shortly after commissioning about 135 metres of road that leads to the Cathedral, which was constructed by the Ebonyi State Government.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Ethics / Moral Theology, Military / Armed Forces, Police/Fire, Politics in General

(Punch) Anglican bishops protest Fulani Herdsmen killings in Ondo

Hundreds of Anglican priests on Friday took to the streets of Akure, the Ondo State capital, to protest against the various killings going on in some parts of the country unabated.

The priests, all in black cassocks and carrying placards, held a peaceful procession to show their displeasure with the incessant killings of innocent Nigerians and the recent killing of Catholic priests in Benue State.

Some of the placards had inscriptions such as: ‘Thou shall not kill’, ‘Love your neighbour and your enemy’, ‘Every soul matters’.

Speaking on behalf of the priests, Venerable Justus Omoyajowo, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take the security and well-being of Nigerians seriously.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Terrorism

(Daily Post) Stop blame game, it worsens situation – Ibadan Anglican Diocese tells President Muhammadu Buhari

The Ibadan Anglican Diocese, on Friday urged the leadership of President Muhammadu Buari to stop what it called the blame game.

The Church stated that the absence of justice was the main reason many Nigerians were resorting to self-help.

It made these assertions in a communique issued and signed by the Most Reverend Joseph Akinfenwa at the end of its second session of the 22nd Synod of the Diocese, held at St David Anglican Church Ijokodo in Ibadan.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Ethics / Moral Theology, Politics in General

New Diocese of Niger to the Nigerian Government: Deal with herdsmen same way you dealt with IPOB

The Bishop of the Diocese, Rt Rev. Owen Nwokolo gave the challenge while addressing newsmen yesterday in his office.

He said: “The killings and murderous activities of herdsmen in Nigeria are enough for the Federal Government to treat them as a more dangerous group than the IPOB and any treatment short of what has been given to IPOB amounts to support of what the herdsmen are doing to Nigerians.

“If the Federal Government fails to sit up and show genuine commitment and readiness in addressing the menace of herdsmen squarely, I urge Nigerians not to trivialize or ignore the call by the former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Theophilus Danjuma for them to defend themselves.

“Nigerians should therefore, look at the activities of the herdsmen and the reaction of the armed forces from what retired Lt. Gen. Danjuma said….”
the activities of herdsmen.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria

(Vanguard) Nowhere to live and worship because of Boko Haram —Anglican Bishop Emmanuel Morris

Borno State is obviously challenged by insecurity. How do you assess the situation?

I came into the state last year at a time when there was a relative peace, and the peace has continued to improve.

Which areas do you think the state government needs to improve in order to impact positively on the lives of the people, especially the vulnerable groups?

Let everybody work for peace; let us understand that something has gone wrong; we need to stop shifting blames. Let us identify where the problem lies and solve it. And to the insurgents, we must appeal to them to lay down their arms because killing and destruction of properties is not the ideal thing; they must join us in the path of peace. They are our brothers and sisters. I also appeal to people who might have been hurt in the course of this insurgency to forgive, let us put behind what has happened and let us forge ahead. Without forgiveness, we can never progress. When we talk about peace, we are not talking about religion. In Islam they say ‘Asallamalaikum’. In Christianity we say ‘Peace be unto you’. What does that suggest to us? And in Judaism they say ‘Shalom’ which is peace; so peace is a concept of life and not something which is limited to religion. Even as a Muslim, if you say ‘Assalamalaikum’, it is not only to your fellow Muslims; it is to anybody you see around you that such person should have peace, meaning you are praying for that person to have peace and you want him to exist. So in these religions, peace is very important, and, honesty, I must tell you that I was really impressed when I came to Borno and I saw Muslims and Christians going to the same polling stations, recreation centres, markets; we use the same highways, weeat food in the same restaurants, we use the same hotels, banks, we do almost everything together. And so, how can you wake up and tell me that Borno is not peaceful?

This state was a peaceful state until 2009 or thereabouts when the issue of Boko Haram came up; so let us identify that something has gone wrong and let us address the problem irrespective of religion, ethnic or political inclination. When you go into history, the first three places of worship that were burnt were churches. And the last three places that were burnt were mosques. This insurgency crisis affected both Muslims and Christians. It is something that has come to disorganize us, and we should understand that and try to resolve it collectively.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Church of Nigeria, Nigeria, Religion & Culture, Terrorism

Anglican bishop of Egbu urges Christians to preach the gospel undaunted

Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Egbu, Right Reverend Geoffrey Okorafor, has encouraged Christian adherents to be consistent in their belief.

He urged them not to waver in the pursuit of their Christian faith, rather remain undaunted in preaching the gospel.

Bishop Okorafor, who gave the charge in his homily during the pastoral visit to St. Matthias Church, Umuchima, Ihiagwa in Owerri West Local Government Area, Imo State, stressed that as believers they should be proud of being identified with Christ.

While advising against self-righteousness, he maintained that they should not allow anything to shake and deflate their faith.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria

Gafcon Chairman Archbishop Nicholas Okoh’s February 2018 letter

God’s words are powerful words. They are never empty. At the beginning of creation ‘God said, “Let there be light” and there was light’ (Genesis 1:3) and when God’s word is proclaimed faithfully today there is new creation. It was this conviction that drew us to Jerusalem in 2008 and our Jerusalem Statement and Declaration began by affirming that we had gathered as ‘a spiritual movement to preserve and promote the truth and power of the gospel of salvation in Jesus Christ as we Anglicans have received it’.

We cannot truly promote the gospel if we are not also careful to preserve it from distortion or dilution and I therefore commend the Church of England Evangelical Council (CEEC) for their recent document ‘Gospel, Church & Marriage: Preserving Apostolic Faith and Life’. At a time when the Church of England’s senior leadership seems unable to resist the pressure to compromise with a highly secular culture, it is a sign of hope that evangelical leaders are able to come together in this way.

They affirm that biblical and apostolic teaching on marriage and sexuality is not a secondary matter over which we can agree to disagree, but is essential to the integrity of the Church’s witness and to Christian discipleship. As the New Testament shows, ‘the apostles had to guard the Church’s distinctive boundaries on matters of both doctrine and ethics, including sexual morality’.

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Posted in Anthropology, Church of Nigeria, Ethics / Moral Theology, GAFCON, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology, Theology: Scripture

(ACNS) Nigerian bishops speak out against increasing attacks by Fulani herdsmen

The House of Bishops of the Church of Nigeria has criticised the country’s government for failing to act against Fulani herdsmen who have carried out a series of fatal attacks. The anti-persecution charity International Christian Concern says that 80 people in Benue state have been killed in attacks by Fulani militants this year. At the heart of the conflict is the challenge to the herdsmen’s nomadic way of life caused by expansion of established farms and villages. According to the Global Observatory, farmer-herder violence in the country has killed thousands of people and displaced tens of thousands more since the current state of Nigeria was founded in 1999.

In a communiqué issued after a meeting of the House of Bishops, the Church of Nigeria expressed sympathy with the families of those killed and injured in attacks by Fulani herdsmen, and went on to say that: “The bishops observed that as a result of the continuous inaction of the Government, people are beginning to suspect that there is complicity of the Federal Government in these despicable acts. We therefore call on the Federal Government, as a matter of urgency to address these ugly trends and ensure that the culprits are brought to justice.”

They continued: “However, the bishops strongly believe that the permanent solution to the killings by herdsmen lies in the establishment of ranches in line with world best practices and not grazing colonies. Besides, the young herdsmen deserve a better opportunity for education and advancement in life. The bishops believe that it is unkind to design a life of perpetual wandering for these class of youth.”

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Terrorism

Nigerian Anglican church charges President Buhari on fight against corruption

The Anglican Church of Nigeria has charged the federal government to re-examine some of institutions and structures put in place to fight corruption with a view to strengthening the institutions and ensuring that corruption is reduced in the country. The church expressed dismay that despite attempts by some past and present leaders to uproot corruption, the fight against corruption has not been successful in the land.

Speaking at the second session of the third synod of the Anglican Diocese of Omu-Aran , Kwara State , the Diocesan Bishop of the Anglican Church, Rt. Reverend Philip Adeyemo, said it was saddening to state that rather than abating, corruption has continued to spread. In his paper with the theme: “A curse is not without cause”, Adeyemo blamed the situation on greed, selfishness, wickedness and partiality among the leaders .

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Ethics / Moral Theology, Politics in General

Archbishop Nicholas Okoh’s Gafcon Chairman’s October 2017 letter

Anglicanism claims to be an expression of Reformed Catholic Christianity, but the Canterbury [Partial] Primates Meeting held earlier this month shows once again that the Anglican Communion is in urgent need of a new reformation. I and a number of brother Primates (representing between us over half of practising Anglicans worldwide) did not attend as a matter of conscience. We cannot ‘walk together’ with those who have abandoned the teaching of the Bible, but that is what the Communiqué issued from the meeting encourages us to do. The painful truth is that the authority of Scripture is being replaced by the authority of Canterbury.

There is no mention in the Communiqué of Lambeth Resolution I.10 of the 1998 Lambeth Conference where the vast majority of the Communion’s bishops reaffirmed the Bible’s teaching on marriage and sexuality, including the clear statement that homosexual practice is contrary to Scripture.

Same-sex ‘marriage’ is referred to merely as a difference of understanding while the only call to repentance is to those who have crossed provincial boundaries to support orthodox brothers and sisters unchurched by leaders who have rejected God’s Word.

The Conference also affirmed the LGBTI community and their lifestyle, while unequivocally disowning the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA), an orthodox Anglican Province.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, GAFCON, Partial Primates meeting Canterbury 2017

(GAFCON) The Anglican Primates are not Walking Together

Archbishop Ntagali, the Primate of Uganda and Vice-Chairman of Gafcon has said, ‘if we are not walking in the same direction, how can we walk together?’

In no way can these leaders, with the Archbishop of Rwanda, be said to be ‘walking together.’ They have chosen to witness to the truth by their absence.

The presence of the Primates from Canada and the United States and the absence of Archbishop Foley Beach whose Church is recognised by Anglicans around the world, is a further testimony to a Communion in which the leaders are not walking together.

Several of the other primates who are attending the meeting are equally concerned about the divisions over the authority of scripture within the Communion, but intend to remain in defence of the Gospel. The Primates are not walking together. At best, they say, “they are walking at a distance.” At worst, they are walking in different directions.

Surely public statements need to reflect reality rather than mere wishfulness.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria, Church of Rwanda, Church of Uganda, Ecclesiology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Partial Primates meeting Canterbury 2017, Pastoral Theology, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology: Scripture

(Vanguard) Nigerian Anglican cleric berates the theology of prosperity preachers

According to [Bishop Festus Davies]… the Church today had abandoned its first love, as it now emphasises prosperity preaching over and above the salvation message. “The challenge the Church is facing today is that the 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th centuries stood for the undiluted word of God, but the present generation is diluting the word of God to the extent that everybody is now preaching what he/she likes. “Everybody preaches what suits him/her and not what Christ stood for. Healing and prosperity in the Bible are good but that cannot be our major emphasis. Once they get the gospel right, there is healing, deliverance, and breakthrough…but Christ first and all other material things will be added to you and not the other way round.” Continuing, he asked: “How can you talk about healing when Christ has not been preached; where do you get the healing from? Until we go back to the old time religion we will not get ourselves right,” he maintained. The bishop noted that the Church has lost its respect in the society, because preachers now preach to please politicians for what they would gain from them.

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Posted in Church of Nigeria

(Vanguard) Anglican Church urges Nigerians to shun hate speech

Dr Nicholas Okoh, Primate of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) on Saturday appealed to Nigerians to avoid hate speech.‎ Okoh made the call in Kano when he led some members of his church to visit Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje at the Government House.

The clergyman, who described the trend in recent times as alarming,‎ urged Nigerians to work assiduously to control hate speech.‎ “Hate speech has serious consequences on our country as it promotes violence, extremism and conflicts. “Most of the adherents of these two religions don’t have the real understanding of the teaching‎s of their religions; that is why we having problem with hate speeches,” he said. Okoh called on Nigerians to preach love, tolerance and understanding in order to move the country forward.‎

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Posted in Anthropology, Church of Nigeria, Ethics / Moral Theology, Islam, Language, Muslim-Christian relations, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Theology