Francis is enacting new rules for investigating bishops over sexual abuse or
its coverup, responding to mounting public pressure on the Catholic Church to
improve accountability after a string of abuse scandals involving senior
church law, laid out on Thursday, requires all dioceses in the world to set up
a “public, stable and easily accessible” process for reporting allegations of
abuse, including by bishops and cardinals, that protects victims and
whistleblowers. It says dioceses have to report allegations about bishops
without delay to the Vatican, which must decide within a month whether to
launch an investigation, take immediate disciplinary action or close the case.
rules seek to address complaints that the church lacked standard procedures for
pursuing bishops and heads of religious orders accused of committing or
covering up sex abuse. They don’t address the long-running divisions in the
church over how strictly to punish wrongdoers in abuse cases. Bishops in most
countries have rejected the U.S. church’s call for all abusers to be
permanently removed from ministry.
church’s troubles over sex abuse were reignited in 2018 by scandals involving
cardinals and bishops in the U.S., Latin America, Europe and Australia. Growing
disillusionment among Catholics threatens to overshadow the pontificate of Pope
Francis, who after taking office in 2013 inspired popular hopes of a church
more in tune with modern society.
pope’s credibility has suffered from criticism that he didn’t take seriously
allegations of abuse, misconduct or coverup by bishops including former U.S.
Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, Chilean Bishop Juan Barros, Australian Cardinal
George Pell and French Cardinal Philippe Barbarin.
November, the Vatican frustrated U.S. bishops by blocking them from voting on
new measures aimed at holding bishops more accountable for abuse or failing to
act against it.
Thursday the head of the U.S. bishops’ conference, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of
Galveston-Houston, welcomed the new law, saying in a statement that it “leaves
latitude for national bishops’ conferences…to specify still more to account for
their local circumstances.”
U.S. bishops’ leading lay adviser on child protection, Francesco Cesareo, said
the new legislation could stifle one element of the U.S. bishops’ proposals:
the establishment of a national commission of laypersons to oversee the
investigation of bishops. The pope’s new law instead gives responsibility for
investigations to local bishops acting under Vatican direction.
February, Pope Francis presided over a four-day global summit of bishops at the
Vatican to address the problem of clerical sex abuse. The pope called for an
“all-out battle” against abuse, but the meeting produced few specific measures.
rules outlined on Thursday aim to address criticism of a lack of concrete
reforms. They stipulate that reporting systems for abuse allegations, whether
run by church officials or outsiders on behalf of the church, must ensure the
privacy and protection of accusers and victims. Such systems are common in the
U.S. and other wealthy countries but less so in the developing world, church
enforced, there’s no doubt the new law will improve the church’s internal
processing of allegations,” said Anne Barrett Doyle of
BishopAccountability.org, a Boston-based group that tracks abuse cases. “But it
has three obvious weaknesses: it stipulates no penalties for ignoring the law,
it mandates no transparency, and it doesn’t require that abusers be removed
permanently from the priesthood.”
Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops, stressed that
the new law covers not only sexual abuse of minors but “abuse of authority”
that forces adults to perform sexual acts. He told the Vatican newspaper the
new law thus applies to the “abuse of nuns by clerics or the abuse of
seminarians or novices by their superiors.”
sends a signal that leadership is subject not only to civil law but canon law,”
Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, adjunct secretary of the Vatican’s
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said at the Vatican on Thursday. He
said he would explain the law to congregants in Malta like this: “If I break
the rules, you must tell the pope, ‘look, our bishop is a bad person.’”
complaints are made against bishops, they must be referred to the Vatican right
away, unless determined to be patently unfounded. The Vatican is required to
decide within 30 days whether to order an investigation and, if so, which
bishop or other church official will lead the probe.
metropolitan, or senior bishop in the region, would be the presumptive
investigator, but the Vatican may choose another if the metropolitan is under
investigation himself or is judged incapable for some other reason. He may draw
on the expertise of laypersons in conducting the probe. The investigation must
ordinarily be completed within 90 days.
legislation, which takes effect June 1, also states that all clergy and nuns
are required to report any evidence of child sex abuse, possession of child
pornography, sexual assault of adults or coverup to their superiors or to the
Vatican’s local representative. This requirement doesn’t apply to information
transmitted during the sacrament of confession, which priests are forbidden to
divulge under pain of excommunication.
The law doesn’t expressly require the church to
report abuse allegations to secular authorities, but says priests and nuns
should comply with local laws.
priest of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Ojota, Lagos, Rev. Fr. John Okoro has
charged members of the Lagos Archdiocesan Catholic Men Organization (LACMO) to
be good ambassadors of Christ.
made this charge while welcoming members of the LACMO 2019 Convention
Organizing Committee during their joint meeting with deanery coordinators and
parish chairmen in the parish on Satursday.
“Be Good ambassadors of
Christ, be good ambassadors of St Joseph your patron saint. Sometimes we tend
to deviate from those values that promote the church, but I know that with
little advice from one another we can make a head way. I want to thank you for
doing a good job and I pray that God will continue to bless you,” he said.
“Be good ambassadors in
loving your wives, as St Joseph loved his wife,and also his foster son Jesus.
You should be good ambassadors in loving your children also. I pray that the
lord will bless you in your works, your businesses and in all your endeavours,
through Christ our lord,” he went further to say.
President of LACMO,
Mr. John Aigbokhaode had earlier inaugurated the committee.
Lagos Archdiocesan Catholic Men
Organization (LACMO) has selected “Let’s Continue with Christ: The
way, the truth, and the life” (Jn. 21:3-7; Jn. 14:6)as theme for this
year’s Annual Convention and Induction. This is as the organization has also
released the programme for week-long activity.
of the Organizing Committee of the 2019 Lagos Archdiocesan Catholic Men
Organization (LACMO) Convention and Induction, NnamdiIkemunveiled the theme and
programme for the convention at a meeting of members of the LACMO 2019 Convention
Organizing Committee, deanery
coordinators and parish chairmen at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Ojota,
Lagos, over the weekend.
convention holds Friday, July
27 – Sunday, July 29, 2019 at St Gregory’s College, Southwest Ikoyi,
the choice of the theme of the convention,”Let’s Continue with Christ: The way, the
truth, and the life” (Jn. 21:3-7; Jn. 14:6)Mr NnamdiIkem said, “Professional
fisherman know how and where to throw their nets. Peter and his fellow apostles
tried that all night but caught nothing. But when Jesus the author of life said
they should cast back their net to the “right side of the boat” they became
successful. Most times right handed fishermen cast their nets to the left, but
notwithstanding that, Peter obeyed the Lord and apart from ripping the benefits
his eyes were opened to the presence of the Lord.”
we are facing a difficult terrain that is putting stress on our ability to be
good family men; good leaders of our communities; etc.,” the organizing
committee chairman stated, calling on men to continue again with Jesus:
The Way, The Truthand the Life; rather
than struggling alone.
The convention has two other
sub-themes: “The Catholic Man as the good family shepherd” Jn.10:11;
1 Tim. 5:8; Mal. 3:13-16; and “The Catholic Man the Leader of the Family
and the Community.” Jud. 6:14-16.
Other features of the convention
include seminars and workshops with “Harnessing the Political Potentials of an
Organization like CMO,” and “Starting and Running a Business in an Unstable Environment,”
as major topics.
The convention which will start with the CMO Week
in the various parishes across the Archdiocese from Monday, July 22 – Thursday,
25, 2019 July will feature charity work, Holy Mass and seminars in the
parishes. Meanwhile, all parishes have been enjoined to form liturgical
committees to ensure adequate mobilization for the parish activities.
Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos has unveiled activities to celebrate the 60th
birthday of Most. Rev. (Dr.) Alfred Adewale Martins, the Archbishop of the
Metropolitan See of Lagos.
of celebration have been earmarked to commemorate the event, beginning Monday,
May 27, and running through Saturday, June 1, the D-day of His Grace’s
to Mr. Peter Nwanze, Chairman, All Purpose Committee, Catholic Archdiocese of
Lagos, organisers of the event, the activities included Children’s Day with the
Archbishop on May 27; Visitations of the Archbishop to Mother Theresa’s Home in
Ketu on May 28 and other charity establishments; Celebration with the elderly
residents at Regina Mundi Home and Choral Competition by the Music Commission
on May 29 as well as the grand finale on June 1.
further, Nwanze stated that the grand finale would commence with the Holy Mass
at Holy Cross Cathedral, Lagos at 10 am.
titled ‘Grace to Live’ and ‘Voice of the Shepherd’ would be presented during
events had been packaged to further highlight Most. Rev. (Dr.) Martins’
Episcopal motto ‘Called to Serve in Love.’
Archbishop, who was born on June 1, 1959, in Abeokuta, Ogun State, and was
ordained a priest on September 18, 1983, had over the years continued to
demonstrate his passion for service through compassion and love.
On July 16, 1251, the Blessed Virgin
Mary, accompanied by a multitude of angels appeared to St. Simon Stock, the
Father General of the Carmelite Order. Holding in Her hand the Scapular of the
Carmelite Order, She gave the Scapular to him and said:
“This shall be to you and to all
Carmelites a privilege that anyone who dies clothed in this (Scapular) shall
not suffer eternal fire; and if wearing it they die, they shall be saved”.
When you are enrolled in the Brown
Scapular (invested with the Scapular) by a priest, you are by that act admitted
into the extended family of Carmel, popularly known as the Scapular
Catholic theologians and authorities
like St. Robert Bellarmine and Pope Benedict XIV explain the promise to mean
that anyone dying wearing the scapular will receive from the Blessed Virgin
Mary, at the hour of death, either the grace of perseverance in the state of
grace or grace of final contrition.
Comte Paul Biver, in his life of
Father Lamy (1855 – 1931), quotes the following from Father Lamy’s writings:
The Blessed Virgin told me
(Fr. Lamy) that many Christian men and women escape hell through her
intercession. She often promotes repentance when the soul is being reft from
the body. At that moment of extreme distress she obtains for them a feeling of
love of God and repentance.
Our Lady has made a promise of
salvation to all who die in her family of Carmel. To die in the Family of
Carmel, one has to be validly invested in the Habit (Garment) of that family,
that is, the Brown Scapular, and perseveringly wear it.
Many Saints, Popes and theologians
have strongly declared their acceptance of the Scapular Devotion. Among them
are St. Robert Bellarmine, St. Peter Claver, St. AlphonsusLiguori, St. John
Vianney, St. John Bosco, Popes Gregory X, Sixtus IV, Leo XI, Leo XIII, St. Pius
X, Benedict XIV, Benedict XV, Pius XI, Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI.
Pope Sixtus IV granted to members of
the Scapular Confraternity all the privileges, indulgences, graces and favours
which are granted to the Cord of Saint Francis, to the Rosary of Our Blessed
Lady, or to any Confraternity whatsoever, “so that they do enjoy them as much
as if they were really members of these sodalities, by reason of their
communication in privileges with the Order of the Carmelites”.
Pope Benedict XIV, writing as a
private theologian before his election as Pope, wrote: “Let no one ever dare to
reject the devotion to Our Lady of Carmel, which the Roman Pontiffs have enriched
with so many and such great indulgences, for by the intercession of the Blessed
Virgin, God has worked many miracles for the advantage of those who practice
In his letter to the generals of the
Carmelite Order on the occasion of the Seventh Centenary of the Brown Scapular,
Pope Pius XII clearly revealed his approval and high opinion of the Scapular
devotion. The following two paragraphs are taken from the letter:
“There is no one who is not
aware how greatly a love for the Blessed Virgin Mother of God contributes to
the enlivening of the Catholic Faith and to the raising of the moral standard.
These effects are especially secured by means of those devotions which more
than others are seen to enlighten the mind with celestial doctrine and to
excite souls to the practice of Christian life. In the first rank of the most
favoured of these devotions that of the Holy Carmelite Scapular must be placed
— a devotion which, adapted to the minds of all by its simplicity has become so
universally widespread among the faithful and has produced so many and such
“For not with a light or
passing matter are we concerned but with the obtaining of eternal life itself
which is the substance of that Promise of the Most Blessed Virgin which has
been handed down to us. We are concerned, namely, with that which is of supreme
importance to all and with the manner of achieving it safely. For the Holy
Scapular which may be called the Habit or Garment of Mary, is a sign and pledge
of the protection of the Mother of God”.
Pope Paul VI, during Vatican Council
II, sent a message to the International Marian Congress in explanation of
paragraph 67 of Lumen Gentium:
“You will make known our will and our
exhortations which we base on the dogmatic constitution of the Ecumenical
Council Vatican II, which is in complete conformity with our thought and indeed
upon which our thought is based.
“That one ever hold in great esteem
the practices and exercises of the devotion to the Most Blessed Virgin which
have been recommended for centuries by the Magisterium of the Church” — (#67).
And among them we judge well to recall the Marian Rosary and the religious use
of the Scapular of Mount Carmel… a form of piety which is adapted by its
simplicity to the spirit indeed of everyone, and is most largely widespread
among the faithful for an increase of spiritual fruit”.
Pope John Paul II in his letter to the
Superiors General of the Carmelite Order (Fathers Joseph Chalmers and
CamiloMaccise) on the occasion of the Carmelite Marian Year, dated 25th March
2001, says that “The Scapular represents a synthesis of Marian Spirituality. It
nourishes the devotion of believers, making them sensitive to the loving
presence of the Virgin Mother in their lives”. One of the truths which the sign
of the Scapular brings out, according to the Pope, is “the continuous
protection of the Blessed Virgin, not only along the pathways of the life, but
also at the moment of passing into the fullness of eternal glory”. “For a very
long time”, says the Pope, “I too have worn the Carmelite Scapular”.
On July 17, 2011 at Castel Gandolfo,
Italy, Pope Benedict XVI praised wearing of the Scapular and asked Mother Mary
to wrap us in Her mantle, noting that the Scapular is a “particular sign of
union with Jesus and Mary”. The Pope commented on the use of this devotion when
he addressed Polish-speaking pilgrims gathered at the papal summer residence in
Castel Gandolfo to pray the midday Angelus. “For those who wear it, it is a
sign of filial abandonment to the protection of the Immaculate Virgin”, he
said. “In our battle against evil, may Mary our Mother wrap us in her mantle”.
During her final vision (appearance)
at Fatima (in Portugal) in 1917, the Blessed Virgin Mary held the Brown
Scapular in her hands. When in 1950 Lucia (one of the three children to whom
Our Lady appeared) was asked why the Mother of God held the Brown Scapular in
her hands, she answered: “Because she wants everyone to wear the Scapular”.
When pressed for a further explanation, Sr. Lucia said “Because it is our sign
of consecration to Her Immaculate Heart”.
“In admitting me into her Family of
Carmel, Mary promises me three great favours” says Fr. Chaignon, S.J. “She will
protect me in danger, she will help me to die well, and she will promptly aid
me after death”.
The Scapular is a sign of our special
adoption by the Mother of God. The first and greatest privilege it brings us is
that it envelopes us in the special love of Our Blessed Mother. It makes us
“Hers” in a very special way.
The Scapular makes us not only the
servants of Mary but also the “sons (and daughters) of her choice”. From the
moment we are enrolled in it, we are dedicated to her in a special way and have
a special claim upon her protection and intercession. Through her intercession,
she protects us from evil, shields us from the attacks of Satan and helps us to
overcome temptation and sin.
The scapular is a sign of our
consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. By wearing the scapular, we
pledge our whole life to Mary — we totally surrender to her all that we are and
all that we have. The Scapular should be a constant reminder that we belong to
her at all times and in all places. It should be a constant reminder to the
absolute purity of Mary and of our duty to imitate her. It should separate us
from all that is not holy and inspire us to greater and greater purification of
our lives. A life that is consecrated to Mary should always bear the good fruit
of love, charity, kindness, meekness, gentleness and prayerfulness. As St.
Louis de Montfort puts it: “The most perfect consecration to Jesus is nothing
else but a perfect and entire consecration of ourselves to the Blessed Virgin”.
For more than four centuries, the
scapular has been known as “Mary’s sacrament”. The scapular is not only an
assurance of salvation after death; it is even now a powerful means of grace.
In instituting such a simple but complete devotion, Mary continually binds
herself, as it were, to intercede for us.
Pope Leo XI recognized one aspect of
the sacramental quality of the scapular when he said, on its being accidentally
removed from him at the moment of his Papal investiture: “Leave me Mary, lest
Mary leave me!” So did St. John Vianney when he called the scapular one’s
safeguard against temptation. Blessed Claude de la Colombiere, the renowned
Jesuit and spiritual director of St. Margaret Mary said, “Because all the forms
of our love for the Blessed Virgin and all its various modes of expression
cannot be equally pleasing to her, and therefore do not assist us in the same
degree to reach heaven, I say, without a moment’s hesitation, that this
scapular is the most favoured of all”. He also adds, “No devotion has been
confirmed by more numerous authentic miracles than this scapular”, and “No
other devotion renders our salvation so certain”.
Let us not conclude, however, that the
scapular is endowed with some kind of supernatural power, which will save us no
matter what we do or how much we sin. We might apply here what St. Alphonsus
says about devotion to Mary in general: “When we declare that it is impossible
for a servant of Mary to be lost, we do not mean those who by their own
devotion to Mary think themselves warranted to sin freely. We state that these
reckless people, because of their presumption, deserve to be treated with
rigour and not with kindness. We speak here of the servants of Mary who, to the
fidelity with which they honour and invoke Her, join the desire to amend their
lives. I hold it morally impossible that these be lost”.
Saints and Pontiffs often warn us of
the foolhardiness of deliberately living in sin because of Mary’s Scapular
Promise. Pope Pius XI warned all the faithful that “although it is very true
that the Blessed Virgin loves all who love Her, nevertheless those who wish to
have the Blessed Mother as a helper at the hour of death must in life merit
such a signal favour by abstaining from sin and labouring in Her honour. “One
can take it as certain”, says John Haffert, “that if a person continually sins
because of Mary’s Scapular Promise, he/she shall not die in the Scapular. To
lead a sinful life while trusting in the Scapular Promise is to commit a sin,
the horror of which borders on sacrilege; its punishment will not only be eternal
but far worse than if one had led a sinful life without making the Mother of
God an excuse for crucifying Her Son”. It is clear from the words of St.
Alphonsus and the Pontiffs that a certain measure of fidelity is required on
the part of those who wish to gain the special love and protection of Our Lady.
It is the teaching of our holy faith
that no one can merit the gift of final perseverance. We have no insurance
against the loss of the state of grace. It does not follow that, because we are
in the state of grace today, tomorrow will find us the friends of God and heirs
to his kingdom. We do not know the time of our death. We can never be sure that
death will come when we are in the state of grace. This depends upon divine
providence. Strictly speaking, a person could live for years in the state of
grace and have the misfortune to fall into grievous sin. If death overtook him
before he had chance to go to confession or to make an act of perfect
contrition he would be lost.
One of the greatest means of final
perseverance we have is devotion to our Blessed Mother. It is the constant
teaching of the Church that devotion to God’s Mother is not only a means but a
pledge of eternal salvation.
When we are enrolled in (invested
with) the scapular we become affiliated to the Order of Carmel. We participate
in the spiritual treasure of Masses, prayers and good works of the Order.
Enrolment in the Scapular makes us members of the Confraternity of Our Lady of
Mount Carmel, a big family of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in the world. When we
belong to the Confraternity, we have thousands and thousands of brothers and
sisters in Carmel praying for us always; and when we are dead and forgotten by
our nearest and dearest, they will continue to intercede for us until we reach
the gate of heaven and the arms of our Blessed Mother.
The mother of God showed a vision of
hell to the three little children of Fatima and said to them: “Pray, Pray very
much, and make Sacrifices for sinners; for many souls go to Hell because there
are none to sacrifice themselves and to pray for them”.
The sinner who wears the scapular has
a whole world-wide Confraternity praying for him. “There is a second reason”,
says Fr. Schultz, C.S.S.R., “why those who wear the scapular will save their
souls; they will never be without the help of prayer”.
Even though we have the assurance of
Mary’s special help and the support of Carmel’s unceasing prayer to plead our
cause before the tribunal of divine justice, we should not tempt even the
multitude of Our Lady’s tenderest mercies. Those who wear her scapular should
be the first to give her the homage of their whole lives and to call her
blessed at all times. The scapular is not simply the mark of a special devotion
to her. It is the sign of a life lived in her.
A Scapular is made up of two
rectangular pieces of brown cloth, which are linked together by two cords so
that it can be won around the neck. The scapular must be won constantly (day
and night). It can be worn underneath one’s clothing. The blessing and conferral
of the scapular are attached to the wearer for life. After having received the
initial blessed scapular, subsequent scapulars which are used do not need to be
blessed nor conferred again.
Unfortunately, in Nigeria and some
other African countries, most of the scapulars people wear, especially youths
and women, are not genuine scapulars. Many people have round their necks, not
the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel but the devil’s scapular. In an
attempt to make Catholics realise this, a certain Catholic bishop reportedly
told scapular wearers among the congregation in a certain Church ceremony to
come out and drop their scapulars in a container. The good scapulars were
separated from the bad. When the bad ones were ripped open, satanic emblems,
hairs, and occultic insignia were found in them. Satan’s scapulars are very
small, hard and plastic covered. Wearing them is a mark of covenant with the
devil. Catholics should be very careful in their choice of the scapulars they
buy and wear. Genuine scapulars made by Carmelite nuns can be obtained from the
Carmelite Monasteries or through the writer.
Our Lady has given us a powerful gift
of Her Scapular. The Church has recommended its use and the Saints have worn
and promulgated the sacramental.
Let us gratefully receive Our Lady’s
precious gift and wear it as a constant reminder of our total giving of
ourselves to Her and Her Divine Son, for, as St. Barnard has said,
“Following her, thou
Invoking her, thou
Thinking of her, thou
Upheld by her, thou failest
Shielded by her, thou
Guided by her, thou growest
Favoured by her, thou
reachest the goal”.Prof.
Michael Ogunu is the first Nigerian lay member of the Carmelite Order. He is
the National President of the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites in Nigeria
and the Provincial President of the Secular Carmelites in Ghana. For more
information about the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, you may
contact him through his e-mail address (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by phone
Admissions and Matriculation Board has delisted 76 Computer-Based Test Centres
for various infractions during the recently concluded Unified Tertiary
Matriculation Examination, raising fears that results from those centres may be
announced the delisting just as it appointed a Senior Advocate of Nigeria to
prosecute about 100 persons allegedly involved in various malpractices during
the UTME that held between April 11 and 18.
Registrar, Prof. Is-haqOloyede, disclosed this on Friday in Abuja while
speaking on ‘Admissions into tertiary educational institutions in Nigeria’ at
the 23rd annual seminar of the Nigerian Academy of Education.
had on April 22 said no fewer than 100 UTME candidates were arrested nationwide
by operatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and the police.
speaking on Friday, narrated how some of the malpractices their Closed Circuit
Television Cameras caught exam cheats in some CBT centres, saying professional
writers hid in toilets and later replaced the UTME candidates who pretended
they went to the toilet to ease themselves.
registrar did not name the SAN leading the prosecution reportedly for security
reasons; he did not also state any day the 2019 UTME results would be released.
said, “When we were watching the clips, we called our staff to come and answer
questions. These were clips of people, our own staff, who did what was not
right. It (malpractice) is not just a matter of the past, it is still present.
“We see a
lot. But we have problems. If I were to be punishing every member of staff of
JAMB that is committing infractions, I will not focus on the assignment. I will
be going from one disciplinary committee to the other and my attention will be
we have no fewer than 100 in police cells across the country who were caught
for examination malpractices. I have appointed a Senior Advocate of Nigeria who
is a former solicitor-general to help me oversee all these so that the suspects
can be brought to book. My director of legal matters asked me, ‘what offences
should we charge these people for; for multiple registration?’ And I said, why
can’t we go to the Examination Malpractice Act? So, my problem has
started by having to draft the charges, despite the fact that we have evidence
registrar noted that the 76 delisted centres in 2019 were from a total of 741
registered centres, as against 22 delisted centres among 630 registered centres
added, “Another thing we saw was malpractices by substitution. A candidate did
biometric verification and came into the hall but a professional writer or
mercenary had hidden in the toilet. So the candidate would now stand up and
said he or she was going to the toilet, only for the professional writer to
come back from the toilet and replace him or her.
candidate will remain in the toilet. So our CCTV watchers from Abuja caught
that and said the person who went to the toilet was not the same person who
came back. And we quickly had to call the security operatives to pick up that
person. And they are saying I am a witch. They don’t know that it is technology
that is aiding us.” – Punch
State Governor-elect, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha CON, has reiterated his
commitment to ensuring peace and harmony in the state.
this assurance during a courtesy visit of the Transition Committee to Governor
RochasOkorocha at the Executive Chamber, Government House, Owerri, Monday.
Chris Okewulonu, who led his team on the visit, also enjoined both committee
members to interface without any rancour or bitterness.
maintained that the overall essence of the committee was to among other things,
ensure smooth and successful handover of power in the state come May 29, adding
that the entire Imo people expect nothing but positive results from them.
course of our meeting, certain issues were looked at which are germane to us.
These issues proved the fact that this opportunity should be used to bring
about harmony and peace in Imo State.
took that decision against the backdrop of what has happened in the
that this opportunity given to us, we should be able to change the narrative,
we should be able to use it to make Imo to be greater than it is today. We want
to use this opportunity to make sure that there is peace, there is harmony in
overriding consideration that dominated our mind, the committee members, in the
course of our deliberations is that the peace and development of Imo State is
the most important thing for all of us. Moving forward, the overall and
overriding interest of Imo people will continue to play in our
his speech, Governor Okorocha appreciated the calibre of personalities that
made up the Governor-elect’s Transition Committee, stressing that he has no
doubt that they would deliver for the overall interest and good of the state.
promised to provide a friendly and healthy atmosphere for the committee to operate
and function while stating that his desire was to see the incoming governor
Governor-elect’s team was thereafter taken round on a facility tour within the
All the 31-member team of the Governor-elect and
the 21-member team.of the State Government were present.
Pope Francis on Friday meets with
the Catholic Biblical Federation on the occasion of their fiftieth anniversary,
telling them the Bible is not a beautiful collection of sacred books to study,
it is the Word of life to be proclaimed through the streets of the world.
to highlight the fruits of its 50 years of activity, the Catholic Biblical
Federation has been holding an International Biblical-Pastoral Congress this
week under the theme “Word and Life, Biblical Animation of the life and
pastoral activity of the Church”.
was on this theme of “Word and life” that the Pope dwelt on in his remarks on
Friday to those gathered in the Vatican’s Clementine Hall.
The word of God is alive
them that, “The word of God is alive”; it does not die or even age;
it remains forever, adding that it was “the Holy Spirit, the life-giver, who
loves to work through Scripture.”
brings God’s breath into the world”, underlined Pope Francis, “it infuses the
heart with the warmth of the Lord. All the academic contributions and volumes
that are published are and cannot but be at the service of this”, he said.
The Word of life to be sown
Pope also pointed out that, “the Bible is not a beautiful collection of sacred
books to study, it is the Word of life to be sown…”
Pontiff emphasized that in the Church, “the Word is an irreplaceable injection
of life. That is why homilies are fundamental”, he said. Preaching, he
continued, “is not an exercise in rhetoric, nor is it a set of wise human
notions. Instead, it is a sharing of the Spirit, of the divine Word that
touches the heart of the preacher, who communicates that warmth, that
Francis expressed the hope that there would be “a new season of greater
love for Sacred Scripture flourishing on the part of all the members of the
People of God”, so that it would deepen our relationship with Jesus.
explained that the Word “gives life to each believer by teaching them to
renounce themselves in order to proclaim Him.” He went on to say that, “in this
sense it acts like a sharp sword which, entering into the depths, discerning
thoughts and feelings, brings to light the truth, wounds to heal.”
The Word and the Church
that lives by listening to the Word, said Pope Francis, “is never satisfied
with its own security. She is docile to the unpredictable novelty of the
painted a picture of a Church that feeds on the Word, and lives to proclaim it.
The Word of God, said Pope Francis is the “best vaccine against closure and
In conclusion, the Pope said, the Word of God
and life should embrace each other and should not be without one another. He
also prayed the Bible would not remain in a library but would be proclaimed
through the streets of the world where people await it.www.vaticannews.va
Catholic Archbishop of Lagos,Most Rev Dr Alfred Adewale Martins,has announced
the elevation ofseven Mass Centres of Quasi Parishes.
this announcement duringthe 2019 Chrism mass held lastThursday at Holy Cross
newly created parishes are: Holy Trinity, Ewowa (former outstation of Corpus
Christi, Egbin, Ikorodu); Blessed Virgin Mary, Ewelepe (former outstation of
Corpus Christi, Egbin, Ikorodu); and Church of the Assumption, Agboroko (from
St Augustine, Iba); and St Hilda, Obadore (from St Augustine, Iba).
are St Stephen, Pacific Estate;and Madonna Catholic Church,Egan;both from St
John Igando; and Church of Annunciation, Ishefun (Outstation of St Patrick’s,