From Ighomuaye Lucky, Benin
Archbishop of Metropolitan See of Benin City and immediate past President of the Catholic Bishop Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), Augustine Akubeze, yesterday, commissioned the Marian Grotto built and donated to St. Andrew’s Catholic Church, Aruogba, Benin, by Senator Roland Owie.
Inaugurating the grotto, Akubeze said it avails the parishioners a place to pray and intercede for themselves and the nation.
“We thank God for touching their hearts to donate towards this beautiful grotto and we pray that God will replenish their purses and bless them with His peace. And to the parishioners, they now have where to go to intercede for their difficulties and challenges.
“It is always a good thing to be in a parish. So, they can come and intercede with the assurance that Our Lady will intercede for them for God to grant them their hearts desires,” Akubeze said.
Owie, Senate former chief whip, who represented Edo South from 1999 to 2003, said he built and donated the grotto to the church to fulfil what was written in the book of Matthew and for his love for Mother Mary.
“For me, it is only fulfilling the journey of Christ in the book of Matthew 25: 35-40 because this world is vanity even if you have 300 airplanes, the day you are gone, that is the end of the matter.
“Mother Mary, the mother of the world, mother of humanity and in all the mystical societies, about 3,500 in Africa and Indian, woman is the symbol.
“And before Christ found me, those that I belonged to in Nigeria, woman is always the symbol,” he said.
Owie said Mary is a unique mother and that If you look at Genesis 1:16, it says at the beginning, God created two lights and that the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night and the lesser light, is Mary.
The Parish Priest, Fr. Andrew Ovienloba, while thanking God for having the grotto at the church premises, charged the Catholic faithful to always make use of it adding that the house of God is the house of prayer.