By Jessica Onyegbula
Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama of the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja on Sunday urged the entire universal Church to invoke the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary to end Coronavirus pandemic.
Kaigama, who gave the charge in his homily at St Anthony Jabi in Abuja, stressed that the church should ceaselessly pray against insecurity and other vices across the nation
He said that the Church should specially remember those most affected by the pandemic and insecurity by praying the Holy Rosary personally,
”And, to link up to Catholic Shrines around the world where prayers will be going on.
”The Holy Father is requesting that during this month of May, the month of Mary,
the entire Church should invoke the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary for the end of the coronavirus pandemic.
”To specially remember those most affected by the pandemic by praying the Holy Rosary personally and to link up to Catholic Shrines around the world where prayers will be going on,” he said.
The Archbishop, who also called for ceaseless prayer against insecurity and other vices, noted that the country was reckoned as one of the most religious nations on earth.
”Our places of worship are often filled with worshippers, but our daily actions reflect a wide discrepancy from the tenets of the religions we profess.
”In spite of our religiosity, we continue to witness an acute rise in the numbers of terrorists, bandits, kidnappers and militants, not to talk of corrupt officials.
”We price evil over good, laud violence over peace and personal economic interests over collective nation building.
”We arrogantly feel that we are masters of creation and of ourselves, and those, who are comfortable, think that only the poor should worry about God or religion.
”Some remember God only when they are in trouble like the Prodigal Son (cf. Lk. 15:11-13). Some cut off themselves from God during difficult moments.
”Some live very ungodly lives and yet, expect the world to love and respect human lives and human rights.
”The branches that do not bear good fruits are the nominal or indifferent Christians among us. They are tied to Jesus only by an outward profession.
”The kind of fruits they bear are what St Paul enumerates in Galatians 5:19-21: immorality, impurity and shamelessness, idol worship and magic, hatred, jealousy, violence, anger, ambition, division, factions, envy, drunkenness, orgies and the like,” he said.
Kaigama further said that in the face of rising challenges of all kinds in our nation, we feel duty bound to ask, if those who represent our collective interests in the Presidency, Senate, House of Representative, etc., do make the dividends of democracy come to us,
”Or, they are only experiencing the fruits of democracy in their pockets and with their families and friends instead of all Nigerians.
”We are faced with consuming insecurity, excruciating poverty, spiralling unemployment and the arbitrary destruction of human lives.
”It is very painful and shameful that a country blessed with abundant resources, so endowed with intellectuals, professionals of eminent credentials, and a hard working people should suffer the kind of crippling poverty and social deprivation that give birth to multidimensional violence.
”We should ask God for the grace of renewal, fruitful governance and a godly management of our resources, devoid of individualism, nepotism, bigotry and so on,” he said. (NAN)
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