Fr A. N. Abiagom, CM

1. I received lots of messages on my phone after the Pentecost Sunday became black in Nigeria (05-06-22). Fr. Pray for St. Francis, Owo. Prior to the messages, I was already aware of the usual sad story, but I needed to reflect before commenting on it.

2. It is 5:00 am in the part of the world where I am at the moment. My eyes opened at 3:30 am and has refused to close again for sleep. How would it? I went to bed with lots of burden in my heart over the fact that Pentecost Sunday was not just red in the colour of the vestments, but the redness of life in more the 50 human persons was shed in their place of worship.

3. Unfortunately, the narrative is being changed. Some are reporting “it was bomb attack”, and that the terrorists were from “Mali” and “Libya”. Bomb blast with no destroyed structure, no black traces on any wall, nor damaged seats. No dismembered parts of human bodies, but complete dead bodies and injured faithful in their pools of bloodshed.

Terrorists from Mali…??? From where and when did they get to Nigeria and headed straight to St. Francis, Owo? Who invited them to Nigeria? Is the Parish of St. Francis at war with Malian Terrorists? Whatever could have triggered this war is interesting and worthy of investigation.

4. Why the Church? There is no need to ask even! It is a clear case of religious persecution against the Christian faith. A persecution striving under the watchful nose of the government. The Church is under attack. The kidnapping of priests, killing of the faithful has been on for sometime now and has becoming a tradition, unfortunately. By these incessant attacks against the body of Christ, a teething question is raised concerning religious freedom in Nigeria!

5. I congratulate majority of the Political leaders (esp. Southern ones) for putting their political ambitions, their families and luxurious lifestyle before the common good of their people. They have sold out their people and lands for plates of porridge.

I congratulate the security agencies in Nigeria for their intelligence and commitment to securing the lives and property o the poor masses. They are always on top of the situation becomes worsened the more they sit on top of it.

I congratulate the government of the day for the real change she has brought to Nigeria.

6. As security is the greatest challenge in our society today, let CCTV be everywhere. So that we could at least confirm whom our attackers are to avoid the Malian story.

7. Honestly, I personally don’t believe in the ongoing elections and campaigns in view of 2023 and beyond as far as Nigeria is concerned. Nigeria needs a referendum! No election can salvage the deplorable state of the Nigeria I see before my very eyes. Even if the right person emerges, what about those who would work with him? Talkless of the already compromised security forces! A nation strongly tribalistically and religiously divided, cannot be objective in electing a leader. Even if they do, how objectively would they support his administration without sabotage???

9. The Church can do more than pray! We need help both locally and internationally! Let those who have the voice speak out! Security measures also have to be put in place within the Church structure. Time is now!



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