Nigeria’s Federal government “will continue to support the Church in the freedom of worship,” the President of the West African nation has told Christian leaders in the country.
Addressing Christian leaders Wednesday, September 14 at the opening of the Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion Standing Committee Meeting, the Minister for Youth and Sport Sunday Dare, who read out the message of President Muhammadu Buhari, urged Nigerians to pray for the country’s progress.
“I wish to inform you that this government will continue to support the Church in the freedom of worship,” President Buhari said, and added, “We will continue to work with the Nigerian inter-religious council on issues about religion and I encourage you all to keep praying for Nigeria, our dear country.”
The Nigerian president also asked for prayers for the success of the general polls scheduled for 2023. He said, “As we look forward to the forthcoming elections, we must hope and pray for God’s will to be done.”
“God’s kingdom will never come until his people seek His will and do His will in their daily living, in their family and in our nation,” President Buhari said, and added, “My prayer is that God’s will be of utmost importance in our lives.”
Nigeria has been grappling with insecurity since 2009 when the Boko Haram insurgency began.
Members of the extremist group have been organizing random attacks on various targets including civilians, political and religious leaders.
On September 12, Bishop Peter Kayode Odetoyinbo of Nigeria’s Abeokuta Diocese invited the people of God to pray for their political leaders involved in campaigns ahead of the 2023 elections to “always turn to God”, submitting to His will.
Bishop Odetoyinbo who was preaching during Holy Mass on day four of the 2022 second Plenary Assembly of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) challenged Nigerians to contribute to progress in their respective communities in the example of the Centurion, saying, “Let us be dedicated in contributing to the development and unity of our social and ecclesial community.”
In his opening remarks at official opening of the CBCN Plenary Assembly on September 11 with Holy Mass, the CBCN President, Archbishop Lucius Iwejuru Ugorji, spoke about insecurity in Africa’s most populous nation, saying, “We are passing through what might be deemed as the darkest chapter of our history as a nation.”