At Easter, Kumuyi, Kaigama, Ukpai, TUC preach righteousness, peace, patriotism
As Christians across the globe celebrated the resurrection of Jesus Christ (Easter), yesterday, General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church, Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi, advised Nigerians to shun vices and embrace righteousness, which the event represents.
Delivering his Easter message, themed “Risen with Christ,” the cleric cautioned that the significance of the celebration must be internalised through renewal of lives.He said: “As the power of resurrection comes upon your life, it comes with renewal.
“The renewal is not limited to individuals, but available for the nation of Nigeria, continent of Africa, Asia, America, Europe and others
“Such renewal has the capability to affect your mind, heart, energy, vision, conscience, among others.”
BESIDES, Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, Most Reverend Ignatius Kaigama, admonished Christians and Muslims to see the Easter celebration and the ongoing Ramadan as an opportunity to foster social harmony and peaceful co-existence by doing everything humanly possible to overcome ethno-religious and socio-political hostilities.
He warned that there “is anger across religious and ethnic lines against leaders, who milk the country dry and rob the citizens of a decent life.”
In his Easter homily at Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Pro Cathedral, yesterday, in Abuja, Kaigama pointed out that even as governance appears to take the back seat as the drums of campaign ahead of the 2023 general elections are rolling out, many are questioning the sincerity of politicians vying for public offices, adding that Nigerians want selfless and empathetic leaders, not those paranoid, defensive and antagonistic towards critics.
The Archbishop said Nigerians detest leaders operating in their comfort zones and who do not feel the discomfort and pain of the lack of electricity, potable water, fuel or the social dislocation caused by the frequent disruption of schools and medical services due to strikes by workers pressing for their legitimate rights.
He continued: “The brutal killings, kidnappings, immoral and anti-social activities in different parts of Nigeria are brought about by the cumulative effect of sins in the nation. It is only when we stop offending God and one another that the negative and harsh social realities we are witnessing today would be greatly minimised.
“In Nigeria, we have the habit of only blaming those in political leadership, but forgetting that in our private lives, we violate God’s laws and also violate neighbours’ integrity and rights saying like Cain, ‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’ (Genesis 4:9).”
According to Kaigama, Christ’s resurrection is victory of life over death, of hope over despair, and of love over hatred, victory of good over evil, unity over rivalry, generosity over selfishness, peace over violence, co-existence over strife, justice over iniquity, and truth over falsehood.
SIMILARLY, foremost preacher and President, Uma Ukpai Evangelistic Association Incorporated, Rev. (Dr.) Uma Ukpai, has urged Nigerians to reject heartless politicians with their votes at the 2023 general elections.
He said what Nigeria needs at this point “are leaders with compassion, who have the love of the masses at heart.” At an interactive session with journalists on his Easter evangelism, organised by Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA) in Abuja, Ukpai maintained that no politician has a right to rule over the country if he is not in love with the people.
ALSO yesterday, the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) admonished Nigerians on sacrifice, love and peace to surmount the nation’s numerous challenges.
In a statement to celebrate the 2022 Easter, the union said the need to embrace the virtues was necessary, as majority of Nigerians had allowed trivial issues like ethnicity and religion to take control and disrupt critical developmental goals, leaving the country in a mess.
TUC stated that impunity, selfishness, cronyism, religious intolerance and nepotism have created serious divisions in the entire country.
Noting that it has never been this bad, the union stressed that everyone has a role to play to wriggle Nigeria out of its many problems.
Adding that Easter offered the country the opportunity to rethink the very essence of humanity, it, therefore, called on the government to address the worsening state of insecurity, poverty, unemployment and senseless waste of human lives to allow for the needed transformation.
The body said: “When we reflect on Easter, it should remind us that as a country, we need to be truthful, upright, honest and fear God. We must understand that our purpose in life here is to live in obedience to our Creator’s will and love one another.
“This is a moment of sober reflection and it is not a mere coincidence that the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ is happening at a time our Muslim brethren are also observing their fast. It suggests that God is interested in healing our country.”