BY VEN. FOLUSO TAIWO)
The Primate of All Nigeria (Anglican Communion) has appealed to Bishops not to be in a hurry to ordain Priests, but be painstaking in assessing those coming to priesthood so as to guard properly their point of entry.
He said this is the only panacea alarming dismissals and suspension of Priests in the dioceses.
He made this appeal in his message at the closing formalities of the just concluded 8th Divine Commonwealth Conference (DIVCCON) at the National Christian Centre in the Central District of Abuja. The Primate recalled how in 1979, he wrote the deacon thesis in Asaba Diocese on who is at fault of the rate of dismissals and suspension of Priests and concluded that the fault is at the point of entry.
He reiterated that if the Church is thorough in the assessment of those who come to Priesthood the rate of dismissal and suspension of Priests would be drastically reduced adding that Priesthood is a serious matter and when priests fall there is no spirit of repentance because it is a case of a dry fish that cannot be bent.
He advised Bishops that in the interest of their lives they should not be in a haste to ordain or send them to seminary. He reminded those who want to be ministers in the church that there are powers in the church, money power, political, women witchcraft and other powers and they are ready to claim lives.
According to the Primate, a clergyman must possess power that is overriding all these powers which is the power of the Lord if not he will be frustrated.
Primate Okoh, while announcing the date for the 2019 DIVCCON, November 11 to November 15, 2019 said the Church is working hard to make sure that something better in hosting and venue is worked out. He announced that a large expanse of land has been negotiated with government to the tune of Two hundred and sixty eight million naira (N268 million) and has been paid for. Not only this, another twenty six million naira (N26 million) has been paid for certificate of occupancy and ground rent for four years. The Primate added that another twenty eight million naira (N28 million) was paid to settle farmers for the CASH CROPS met on the land adding that the land now belongs to the church what is left is to develop it without wasting time.
He said a committee would be set up to look for the possibility of actualizing the physical occupation of the place.
The Primate thanked everybody that attended the hitch free 2018 DIVCCON attended urging them to be witnesses and serve God for their Apostleship not to dry up.
It was testimony galore as many people trooped out in quick succession to testify to the goodness and mercy of the Lord.
Over eight thousand (8,000) delegates attended the five day annual programme from all the 167 dioceses in Nigeria and Diaspora.