The Catholic Bishop of Oyo Diocese, Most Rev. Emmanuel Badejo, has urged Christians to promote the virtues of Jesus Christ in their service to God.
Badejo made the call in an interview with newsmen, yesterday in Ibadan.
He said that as Christians all over the world celebrated the Palm Sunday, it was important for faithful to stand up for the teachings of Christ.
According to him, the story of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem as narrated in Matthew’s gospel should spur Christians to open their hearts to God.
“As Christians, we need to open our lives to God, promote the things that Christ did and aspire to live in holiness.
“We should show deep commitment to service, knowing that through Christ, we shall get salvation,” he said.
He said that Palm Sunday celebration should challenge Christians to take a stand for Christ, adding that believers should be consistent in their commitment to the truth.
“Palm Sunday represents dignity, beauty, well being and victory; it should never be jettisoned for sin and evil.
“It holds a lot of significance for the youth, young people must never lose hope, they must believe in their dreams,” Badejo said.
The cleric described Palm Sunday as remarkable because it marked the beginning of the Passion Week.
“This is the most holy week in Christendom; it is the week in which the key events of the history of salvation are celebrated.
“During Holy Week, the Catholic Church commemorates the institution of the priesthood, the sacraments and the Eucharist.
“The Good Friday is also celebrated during the week to commemorate the death of Christ on the cross,” he said.
Also speaking at a church service, yesterday, Revd Cannot Chigozie Obiwulu drew his text in the Daily Fountain Devotional for March 28, from Mathew 21: 1-13 from the New King James Version (NKJV) of the Bible.
The topic is, ‘Channels of God’s Glory’.
In the text, Jesus ordered two of his disciples who were with him at the Mount of Olives” to go over to the village opposite them and immediately you will see a donkey tied and a colt to her loose and bring them to me. “
The cleric said the text is a demonstration of divine direction and coordination in the use of the donkey for the prophetic entry of Jesus into Jerusalem.
He said the two disciplines, the donkey, and its owner were channels used for God’s glory and charged Christians to be channels of the glory of God.
Palm Sunday is celebrated around the world by Christians to mark Jesus Christ’s triumphant entry into Jerusalem.
The features in churches on Palm Sunday include street procession, decoration of churches with Palm branches, sermons reflecting the day and solemn prayers, with chants of “Hosanna in the highest”.
Palm Sunday begins the Holy week in the Christian calendar leading to the end of the Lenten season, to the crucifixion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Obasanjo, Abdulsalami, Sultan, Others Brainstorm On Insecurity
Rising insecurity and agitations for secession by different ethnic groups across Nigeria has attracted the attention of elder statesmen and other national leaders to a meeting in Abuja.
The meeting was organised by Interfaith Initiatives for Peace jointly led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, and Emeritus Cardinal John Onaiyekan, and the National Peace Committee chaired by Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar (rtd).
Reporters were barred from taking part in the closed-door meeting, expected to proffer solutions to the ongoing security challenges threatening the peace and unity of the country.
It was also an exploratory meeting on pressing issues of national unity, security, peace, integration, economic revitalisation and development, women and youth welfare and general progress.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo; former Head of State, General Abdulsalam Abubakar (rtd); Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar; Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; Tor Tiv, Prof Ortese Iorzua James Ayatse, Emeritus Cardinal John Onaiyekan; President General (Ohanaeze Ndigbo), Prof George Obiozor; and Afenifere leader, Ayo Adebanjo; were all in attendance.
Others sighted at the meeting are President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba; CAN General Secretary, Joseph Daramola; JAMB Registrar, Prof Ishaq Oloyede; Etsu Nupe, Yahya Abubakar; former Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe, among several political and traditional rulers at the meeting.
Elder statesmen, Chief Edwin Clark, also attended the event at the Congress Hall of Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, but could not participate in the meeting because he could not climb the staircase to the meeting room.
Fighting Corruption Difficult In Democratic Setting, Buhari Laments
President Muhammadu Buhari says fighting corruption in democratic setting is a difficult task to accomplish.
The president disclosed this during an interview with Arise Television which was televised, yesterday.
According to him, the war against corruption has not been easy for him since he became a democratically elected president six years ago.
He, however, stressed that his administration had succeeded in easing out corrupt public officials without making noise about it.
Buhari recalled that much was achieved in the fight against corruption when he was military Head of State in the early 80s “when a lot of people were sent to prisons before I was also booted out”.
The president frowned at the way and manner local government system was being managed, saying the local government administration was almost non-existent in the country.
He cited situation where state governors continued to starve the local governments of funds saying “in a situation where N300million is allocated to local government and they are given N100million is not fair”.
On activities of bandits and kidnappers particularly in the North-West and North-Central zones, Buhari said he had given the police and Armed Forces the instructions to be ruthless with bandits and vandals terrorising innocent citizens across the country.
He stated that he had told the security agencies to treat bandits and other criminals in the “the language they understand.
“Problem in the north-west; you have people over there stealing each other’s cattle and burning each other’s villages.
“Like I said, we are going to treat them in the language they understand.
“We have given the police and the military the power to be ruthless. You watch it in a few weeks’ time there will be difference.
”Because we told them if we keep people away from their farm, we are going to starve. And the government can’t control the public.
“If you allow hunger, the government is going to be in trouble and we don’t want to be in trouble.
“We are already in enough trouble. So, we warn them sooner than later you’ll see the difference,’’ he said.
On farmers/herders clashes, the president said the problem had persisted because old cattle routes and grazing areas had been violated by development, adding that those who had taken over such traditional arrangements would be dispossessed.
On the fight against insurgency, Buhari dismissed the assertion that majority of Boko Haram members were foreigners.
According to him, the majority of the Boko Haram members are Nigerians, saying this was further corroborated by Borno State Governor, Prof Babagana Zulum.
The president stated that his administration had done a lot to fight the terrorists and insurgents but the problem in the “North-East is very difficult.”
Igboho Declares June 12 Day Of Protest, Warns Buhari
Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, has declared June 12 as day of protest for Yoruba nation agitators.
The self-acclaimed Yoruba activist said the agitators will hold ‘peaceful rallies’ across the South-West region on Saturday, June 12.
Igboho, who spoke through his spokesman, Olayomi Koiki, in a live video programme aired, last Wednesday night, called on South-West governors to cooperate with the peaceful protesters during the exercise.
He warned the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration not to attack the agitators.
He said, “Let us warn the Federal Government that if there is bloodshed this weekend, the international community is watching, if the military kills any Nigerian this weekend, it is going to be very hot.
“The Yoruba nation rally will go ahead in every part of Yoruba land and the rest of the country where it will hold.
“Red alarm will begin on Friday. People should stock up food Items from Friday night.
“We are not backing down this weekend; we are ready to take back what belongs to us.”
He also enjoined agitators to ‘fast’ on Friday.
This is coming after NANS under the leadership of its National President, Comrade Sunday Asefon, had declared June 12 as National Day of peaceful protest to call on the government to act decisively towards addressing insecurity.
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