Jeff Amexhi Agbodo, Onitsha
The Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of all Nigeria Anglican Communion, Most Rev. Nicholas D. Okoh has called on Christians to register, collect their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) and join active politics to vote and be voted for in forth-coming general elections in the country.
Archbishop Okoh gave the charge, on Sunday, in Onitsha, Anambra State, during the consecration of four new Bishops and presentation of Archbishops at All Saints Cathedral, Onitsha.
He also called on Christians to be active in politics in order to be elected in power.
His words, “I want to remind you that your voters card may be hanging somewhere, it is important for you to go and collect it whether heavy rain is falling, stay there and collect it.
“And it is enough of you to collect voter card, get in love in party politics, join a party and not only you will vote ask to be voted for.
“So, do not say the sun is too hot, do not say am very tired, if you do that you are selling your birthright and when it is taken away don’t complain, go and pick your PVC and go and join a party, stop saying that it is dirty, there is nothing dirty there, if it is dirty wish it” Archbishop Oko stated.
He commended Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra state for his support for the bishops, clergies and church and urged him to continue with his good work to uplift the people of the state through his meaningful projects.
While charging the newly-consecrated bishops to be Apostles to proclaim Christ’s resurrection and interpret the gospel, and testify to Christ’s sovereignty as Lord of lords and King and kings.
According to Archbishop Okoh, “You are called to be guard the faith, unity and the discipline of the church, to celebrate and to provide for the administration of the Sacraments of the new covenant, to ordain Priests and Deacons and to join in consecrating Bishops and to be in all things faithful pastor and wholesome example to the entire flock of Christ.”
He prayed to the news bishops, “Fill them with the grace and power which you gave to your apostles, that they may lead those committed to their charge in proclaiming the gospel of salvation. Through them increase your church, renew its ministry, and unite its members in a holy fellowship of truth and love, and enable them as true shepherd to feed and govern your flock, make them wise teachers and steadfast as guardians of its faith and Sacraments”.
The newly-consecrated bishops include Bishop Godwin Anyigor Awoke of Bishop of Ngbo, Ebonyi state, Bishop Wisdom Budu Ihunwo, the Bishop of Niger Delta North Diocese, Bishop Solomon Olusola Akanbi Bishop of Offa Diocese, Kwara state, Bishop Prosper Afam Amah, Bishop of Ogbaru Diocese, Anambra state.
In his remarks, governor Obiano reassured that he would continue to support the church initiatives and urged the new bishops to be good Shepherd and not wolf.
“The Primate! I want to reassure that we will continue to support your initiatives, you are a great man and a father to me in particular and I want to let you know that it was not only the diocese on the Niger or only Bishop Owen that hosted you, I was directly involved in the hosting. I want to congratulate the newly consecrated bishops and I want to charge you and remember that you should a shepherd and not wolf to the flock, you should treat them well and do not devour them”.
“I want to remind you and other bishops that are that you are not only a bishop in Anglican communion, once you are ordained bishop, you are bishop for all the denomination and therefore you should be tolerant because that is only way you can increase the flock that are following Christ. Do not discriminate among yourselves, lift the spirt, we might have faced a greater challenges in Nigeria today and all kinds of things are happening, we can only win when we are united. So am urging all of you from today to see people from other denominations as your brothers and sisters” Obino stated.
The occasion attracted bishops from other churches, politicians, businessmen and technocrats, well meaning Nigerians and friends.