Happy Retirement Cardinal Onaiyekan

Christianity has existed for 2019 years and it’s instructive to notice that for the primary 1054 years, the one church that existed was the Roman-Catholic Church. The primary break up occurred when the Greek Orthodox Church broke away. Then got here the break up from the German Martin Luther who wrote the well-known 95 theses which led to his excommunication from the church and his institution of the Lutheran church sturdily backed by some rebellious German princes who needed to say their independence from Rome. Then got here the institution of the Church of England or Anglican Church by King Henry VIII who took that call as a result of the Pope wouldn’t grant his divorce from Queen Catherine of Aragon who couldn’t bear him male kids. Additional divisions occurred which led to the institution of different orthodox church buildings just like the Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians and so forth. The daybreak of the 20th century noticed the appearance of the Pentecostal church buildings that are uncountable in quantity because the schisms maintain occurring each day.

The western missionaries who got here to Africa have been consultant of all of the denominations of their bid to aggressively unfold the Christian religion to the heathens of Africa and win their souls for the everlasting kingdom.

In a small city of Kabba within the current day Kogi State, Cardinal John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan was born to a peasant household. By dint of hardwork and gifted with a excessive stage of intelligence, he grew to become a Roman- Catholic priest on the comparatively younger age of twenty-five. He earned his doctorate at thirty-two and by no means seemed again in being a shining instance of Christianity within the ‘Giant of Africa.’

He grew to become the Bishop of the Ilorin Diocese in 1984 and ten years later grew to become that of Abuja. He was elected President of the Catholic Bishops Convention of Nigeria in 2000.

His proletarian upbringing the place he confronted a every day battle with poverty didn’t make him out of the blue overlook his roots as he was a voice for the oppressed and downtrodden. He continuously criticized authorities insurance policies each through the navy period and the return to civil rule. His fiery sermons continuously saved the federal government of the day on its toes as he used the highly effective platform to demand extra from the insensitive authorities. In 2005 with the then President Olusegun Obasanjo in attendance on the Mass in Abuja, he known as on him to not fall to the lure of searching for a 3rd time period in workplace because the 1999 structure clearly forbade it. He’s a reincarnation of the Biblical Elijah who was in a position to look King Ahab and Queen Jezebel within the eyes and converse the reality to them with none iota of concern. He took no prisoners and was totally different from most of our current day ‘Men of God’ preferring to not rock the boat in order that the bountiful tithes, choices and different ‘supplications’ to God wouldn’t cut back one bit.

He grew to become the President of the Christian Affiliation of Nigeria (CAN) in 2007 and was an important rallying pressure for the adherents of that religion. He was additionally an important and prolific author and produced a number of extremely rated oeuvres that have been compelling reads.

He was made a Cardinal or Prince of the Roman-Catholic Church in 2012 and he had worldwide clout as Popes John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI in addition to the current Pope Francis gave him crucial world assignments to higher promote the Catholic religion and Christianity as a complete.

He was additionally deeply involved about peaceable coexistence among the many totally different religions within the nation significantly Islam. He wrote an unpublished dissertation way back to in 1976 titled ‘The Shariah in Nigeria: a Christian view’ and the Bulletin on Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations in Africa in 1987. He additionally roundly condemned the proscription of the Shiites motion led by El Zazzaky regardless of a subsisting court docket order. He had mates throughout the divide and was at residence with one and all no matter divergent spiritual inclinations. He took after Pope John Paul II who was so religiously tolerant that he was the primary Roman-Catholic to go to a mosque within the Center East.

We want him a cheerful retirement as he hearkened to the everlasting phrases of William Shakespeare who suggested {that a} good actor leaves the stage when the ovation is loudest. He ought to proceed to be a voice of conscience for the nation and a soothing balm for the emotionally and psychologically battered hoi polloi.

Tony Ademiluyi writes from Lagos and edits

Disclaimer: “The views/contents expressed on this article are the only duty of Anthony Ademiluyi and don’t essentially replicate these of The Nigerian Voice. The Nigerian Voice won’t be accountable or chargeable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained on this article.”

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