The President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria (CBCN); Archbishop Augustine Obiora Akubeze has advocated that the Year 2020 should be one of justice, equity and love in Nigeria devoid of vices that are making life unbearable for the majority of Nigerians, in spite of the country being blessed with natural and human resources.
The Archbishop therefore called on the people of the country to embrace the light of the new born infant King – Jesus; and allow his light to cast out the evil of darkness in our lives. Archbishop Akubeze made the assertion in his address at the first ever vigil Christmas Songs Praise Festival organized by the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria for the 2019, with the title Maranatha Praise.
The programme which took place at the Durumi premises of the CSN, Abuja; as part of the 2019 Yuletide Season celebrations Present was attended by the Minister of Transport, Honourable Chibuike Amaechi, who represented Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; Mrs, Pauline Tallen, Minister of Women Affairs; Chief Mrs. Helen Mark, other government functionaries and dignitaries from all walks of life.
Also, in attendance were members of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Abuja Chapter; leaders of other Christian denominations; priests, Religious and knights of the Church and leaders of various Church groups and over 7,000 people from all parts of Abuja and neighbouring towns.
Noting that the desperate quest for material wealth has enveloped the country like darkness, as portrayed by the life of King Herod at the time of the birth of Jesus, Archbishop Akubeze stated: “Interior darkness is what leads to exterior darkness. John the Baptist was arrested because he wanted Herod to come out of darkness. Herod was eaten up by the material glory of being a king.”
He however added that just as the light of the new born King Jesus conquered the darkness personified by Herod at that time; ““We all must pray that the that the people that walk-in darkness in Nigeria will see the light of the new born infant King. The new born Christ brings peace, joy, justice and progress. Let us all in this new light and cast out the evil of darkness.
The CBCN President continued: “Material acquisition without reference to the author of the material leads to interior darkness. Interior darkness of the soul leads to the disorder use of material wealth. There is darkness in any society that does not share its wealth well. A greater number of people in Nigeria are poor because of the greed of a few. God has blessed our land with enough resources to care for all every Nigerian”.
He added: “There is absolutely no need for us to be seeking a better life for our families outside this country flowing with milk and honey. It is a Promised Land that God has blessed”; he declared. The CBCN President went on to express the hope that: in the Year 2020, Government at the Federal, State and local Government levels will be truly concerned about the welfare of the people who elected them”; while the politicians will walk in the light of Christ”.
He expressed the hope of a new year, where the electorate will no longer be subjects of bribes for electoral votes; security of life and property in the country will be sacrosanct; stable energy supply and rapid growth in economy; religious leaders will desist from manipulating the poor people for selfish gains; and a truly religious Nigerian nation “ where religious values will show in our places of work and improve our development as a society”.
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