CHURCH OF NIGERIA’S RESPONSE TO CHURCH OF ENGLAND’S DECISION ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGNovember 24, 2023
- Korede Akintunde
- September 22, 2023
- 0 Comments
Beloved people of God,
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins to deliver us from this evil age, according to the will of our God and Father.
The 14 General Synod of our Church was held under the protection and guidance of the Holy Spirit at St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Nnewichi, Nnewi Diocese of Nnewi, Anambra State, Nigeria from 12 to 16 September 2023. The theme of the General Synod was “Arise and Build: God’s Mandate for God’s People in a Broken World” taken from Nehemiah 2: 178s18.
This theme is a call from God to us to rise from our slumber, complacency, and despondency through God’s own enablement, to build and rebuild what is about to die. God wants us to serve His purpose for our lives, families, the Church, the nation, and humanity at large. We must acknowledge that the real Builder is God, who Himself builds all things; as the Scripture says, “Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” (Psalm 127:1&2). This drives home our need for total dependence on God and His guidance in these precarious times in the life of the Church and nation.
This call has become critical today in view of the situation surrounding us as a people. We have become like ancient Judah and Jerusalem. God sent them warnings of disasters if they continued in the paths of disobedience but the warnings were not heeded, either by their rulers or the people. The threats of judgment were carried out when God used Nebuchadnezzar, the King of Babylon, to destroy Judah and Jerusalem, and carried them into captivity. The state of the people of Judah and Jerusalem was that of brokenness, despondency, complacency, discouragement, abject poverty, violence, deprivation, and violations by their religious and political leaders. •
The inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem had become used to the devastations. Indeed, abnormality was accepted as the norm. The Jews in Judah and Jerusalem were acquainted with reproach humiliating deprivation, and many dehumanizing conditions. The enemy had destroyed their peace and taken away their security, and there was fear in the land.
It was at such a time that God quickened the heart of Nehemiah, then serving in the King’s Palace to come to the rescue of the people and city of God.
Our nation is very much like the situation in Judah and Jerusalem of those days; abnormality has become the norm in our land and many have come to accept them as the way, either for selfish reasons or for inability to challenge the situation.
With brokenness around the world and our nation, Nigeria in particular, Christians cannot but arise to rebuild the ruins, while they are still redeemable. However, God needs the likes of Nehemiah, who, although comfortable where he was, nevertheless, was troubled by the situation of the people and the conditions of Judah and Jerusalem. God needs men and women who, like Nehemiah, will embark on the task of rebuilding the brokenness of our society not for what they will gain but with the willingness to sacrifice even their own rights for the sake of the people. God needs men like Nehemiah, who will oppose evil and evil people, not minding who they are. The men and women God is looking for must be those who are not corrupted by the system of the world.
We must aim at rebuilding individual lives and families, rebuilding the people and the Church, rebuilding the community and society, rebuilding and restoring godly leadership. To achieve these, we must imbibe the leadership qualities of Nehemiah by having personal faith and maintaining close walk with God. We must have personal commitment to prayer, the word of God, and compassion for the people. Let us strengthen our believe in the people’s ability to contribute to their own welfare, be ready to make sacrifices to see the will of God for the people established, and be leaders by example. This explains why Nehemiah prayed that God will remember him for all he has done in His name and for His people. When we serve God in this way, God and man will remember us and we will remain on the positive side of history.
Beloved in the Lord, we continue to appreciate your support through the St. Matthias’ Day and Advent Sunday special fund raising. They have been great sources of strength for the Church in her missions, since inception. St. Matthias’ Fund for 2023 has been collected while Advent Collection is still coming up on Sunday, 3’d December, 2023. We strongly appeal for improved participation. Those who have not been participating are called upon to do so and those who have been participating are encouraged to do more. No Church or priest should exempt themselves from this noble project.
The need to support our brethren in the troubled parts of the country, who are displaced by the activities of terrorists and some other natural disasters like flooding, is a continuous task for our Church. We therefore call for your support for the Church of Nigeria’s Relief Fund to enable us fulfill this purpose.
The 2023 edition of the Joshua Generation International Youth Conference (JGIYC) was held successfully with over 22,000 youths gathering at the National Stadium, Abuja. We thank our fathers in God for their cooperation. We encourage all our youths to join in this vision as a platform, both to grow spiritually and to fulfill life purpose in accordance with the will of God.
The 2023 edition of the Annual Divine Commonwealth Conference (DIVCCON) comes up from 6 to 10 November, 2023 at Abuja. We encourage all Dioceses to facilitate participation by our members, especially our teeming youths.
There has been an outcry for the Church to seek, train and teach our male child, who will grow up to be the man and father of homes and leaders in Church and society. To this end, we are establishing the OPERATION SAMUEL MISSION. We direct that Dioceses and Provinces provide special Church groups and fellowships to teach and train our young boys. We commend the Dioceses that are already doing this, and encourage all our Dioceses to provide for the spiritual and social nature of the boy child in all our Churches.
We sincerely appreciate the Bishop of Nnewi Diocese, the Rt Rev’d 8s Mrs. Ndubuisi Obi and the good people of the Diocese for hosting the 14 General Synod. We extend our thanks to the Archbishop of Province of the Niger, the Most Rev’d Alexander Ibezim, PhD and the Bishops of the Province and their wives for their support. We commend their hospitality and pray God to bless them all abundantly.
Finally, we note that the greatest need of the Church today is for men and women of sincere faith in God, who will live out their convictions everywhere, and those that will let God be seen in their professions. The Church can only rule and influence the society for God through dedicated men and women like Nehemiah as it was in the rebuilding of Jerusalem. Let us arise in the power of God to rebuild the ruins of our land, to the glory of God and the blessing of humanity.
Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, Forever and ever; Amen.
Your most beloved Father in God,
The Most Revd Henry C. Ndukuba, DD
Archbishop, Metropolitan, and Primate of All Nigeria