CHURCH OF NIGERIA’S RESPONSE TO CHURCH OF ENGLAND’S DECISION ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGNovember 24, 2023
- Korede Akintunde
- October 19, 2023
- 0 Comments
The President of Mothers’ Union / Women’s Guild, Priceless Jewel and Girls Guild, Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Mrs. Angela Eberechukwu Ndukuba, presented her presidential address during the occasion of the 24th Annual Diocesan Women Conference of the Diocese of Abuja; Themed “Walk Before Me and Be Blameless-Gen. 17: 1b” which held at the Cathedral Church of the Advent, Gwarinpa, Abuja, the program started from Thursday 12th To Saturday 15th, October, 2023.
Mrs.Ndukuba, recounts the 23rd Edition of the Diocese of Abuja, Annual Diocesan Women’s Conference; Themed “That I May Know Him” which was hosted by Gwarinpa Archdeaconry at St Matthew’s Anglican Church, Gwarinpa under the guidance of the holy spirit. She noted that indeed the conference was a successful one with great impact.
She reiterated the importance of the role women hold in the family. A family’s success depends on the women, referring to the role of the mother of St. Augustus who prayed when he drifted away from the Christian faith, and God changed his life, using him in the history of humanity.
During the address, Mrs Angela gave an in-depth account of the foundational structure of the present Cathedral Church of the Advent which is the host of the 24th Annual Diocesan Women’s Conference.
“It is pertinent to note that the Cathedral Church has played host to several provincial and diocesan events: like the General Synod of the Church of Nigeria, Diocese of Abuja Synods, Consecration of Bishops, Ordination of Priests and Deacons, Diocesan Power Nights, Annual Way of the Cross, Diocesan Anniversary, otherwise known as the Annual carnival for Christ and Thanksgivings.
Another notable event the church has hosted includes the presentation of Most Reverend Peter Jasper Akinola as the 3rd Primate of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, on 25 March 2000 and the Most Reverend Nicholas D. Okoh as the 4th Primate of Church of Nigeria, on 25 March 2010 and the presentation of the Most Reverend Henry C. Ndukuba as the 5th and Incubate Primate of the Church of Nigeria, on 25 March 2020. Also, a service of the memorial was held in honor of the late Queen of England, Queen Elizabeth II, at the Cathedral Church of the Advent in September 2022.”
On the theme for this year, Mrs Ndukuba defined some keywords in the Theme – Walk Before Me and Be Blameless (Gen17:1b) which is in the context of the passage to gain an understanding of God’s message to the women. She stated that “every word in the theme is very important, and the two key words are Walk and Blameless.
She affirmed that walking before the Lord is to live daily in the consciousness of the Lord’s presence. It is to be aware that the Almighty God is interested in our life decisions or experiences.
“The desire of God is for His people to walk with Him. As a child walking in the company of her parents would avoid certain actions, even from his or her peers, in the same way, our relationship of walking with God or before God places on us certain discipline of avoiding shame and wrongdoing in the sight of God and man. The phrase BEFORE ME and the conjunction AND set the context and relationship between the two keywords.”
“The idea of walking before me is not strange to us as mothers because often times we say the same words to our children whenever we are talking with them. It shows the relationship between Abraham and God because you do not tell a stranger “walk before me”. It also points to the responsibility that goes with the relationship.”
She added that Walking before God is a command and not just an advice.
She reminded the women of Abraham’s relationship with God and the blessings that followed from Genesis Chapter 12:2-3;
And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing. And I will bless them that bless thee, And curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shalt all families of the earth be blessed.
She narrated how Abraham remained childless and like any of us he was under pressure, though God kept assuring him of a son who would be his flesh and blood through his wife but he was disappointed after many years of waiting, but finally in chapter 17 of Genesis, God showed up as El Shaddai (the “Almighty God”) and came in mercy to Abraham at the age of 99 where He said to him, I am God Almighty “Walk Before Me and Be Blameless”. This verse elucidates God’s confirmation of his promises to Abraham.
The theme, Walk Before Me and Be Blameless” sums up God’s expectation of Abraham, which is His expectation of us too she added.
“God requires a sanctified life for those who would enjoy His promised blessings. We cannot claim only the blessings of Abraham we must follow his faith and obedience too.” Which further explains that the declaration holds profound theological and moral significance in the context of the Abrahamic faith, especially the Christian faith. “Walk before me and be blameless is a powerful and enduring message for every believer as a call to faith, righteousness, and a life lived in the presence of God. It signifies a statement to a moral and spiritual journey characterized by obedience and continued striving for moral perfection.”
According to Mama Nigeria, “Working with God should be our lifestyle, our conversation with Him in prayers and how we meditate on His word. Our desire to live each day side by side with God for His faithfulness is a central theme in the Bible and is the basis for our faith in God”.
This implies God’s unwavering commitment to his people, his consistent character, and his steadfast love and loyalty towards his creation. Throughout the scriptures, God’s faithfulness is portrayed as a source of comfort, hope, and assurance for believers.
Finally, Mrs. Ndukuba assured women that it does not matter what they are going through in their personal lives, families, and nations, especially in Nigeria today; she emphasizes God’s ability to provide for His people, and His faithfulness in fulfilling His promises.
This serves as a reminder of trust, dependence, and worship of one God, who is both mighty and compassionate. “Our God is an all-sufficient one and he will meet us at the point of our needs”. She added.
In addition, Mrs. Ndukuba noted Other high points since the program commenced which were; the revival hour by the Dean of the Cathedral of Kubwa Diocese; the Ven. Babatunde Oyeshina, the bible study teaching by the Principal of Anglican International Academy; the Ven. Dalimore Odigie, the registrar of Diocese of Abuja and Church of Nigeria; Mrs. Kehinde Ajoni who gave a Legal lecture on the issues of next of kin, will, and other legal tenders. Then Dr. Kwanso Uche, a gynecologist, enlightened the women on fibroid; He gave a lecture about the normality and abnormality in the female body system. Meanwhile, Mrs. Adaobi Oso gave an exposition on the theme “Walk Before Me and Be Blameless” and she focused on Mary Magdalene, and why it is important for women to work with the Lord.
Moreso, Mrs. Amaka Oguejiofor gave a lecture on smart parenting, she informed the parents on the modern ways of child upbringing, most especially the mothers who spend much time with their children.
Lastly, Dr. Francis Alade gave lessons on the human kidney; he enlightened on the right lifestyle, diet, and exercise which will keep one healthy.
In attendance was the Primate of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion and the bishop of Abuja Diocese, The Most Rev’d Dr. Henry C. Ndukuba who appreciated the women for their role in family and societal building and charged them to use their large numbers to continue to propagate the gospel of Christ in a time of decadence like this. He commended the presidential address of the Women conference and also charged the diocese of Abuja clergy to utilize the well delivered address as a theme for the diocesan pulpit. Others include, clergy, dignitaries, captains of industries, women organisations and wives of bishops from various dioceses.