The Archbishop of Abuja Catholic Archdiocese, Ignatius Kaigama, has said the Catholic Church will block attempts by any of its priests to engage in a ‘personality cult’ in the name of adoration.
The Archbishop was reacting to the recent attack by Rev. Fr Ejike Mbaka, a Catholic Priest in Enugu State on the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi.
Mbaka had accused Obi of being ‘stingy’, hence he won’t win the 2023 presidential election.
His comments generated outbursts nationally and he apologized to the former Anambra State governor.
Kaigama, in his homily at St. Aloysius Catholic Church, Mpape, Abuja, urged Catholic priests to take advantage of the respect they command among the faithful to strengthen unity, peace and love among the people and communities instead of fanning flames of discord.
He said: “Priests should not allow the Mass to become an occasion for drama, exaggerated inculturation or utterances that are purely political or mundane. People come to Jesus at Mass to get spiritually nourished by the word and the bread of life and refreshed for the long, rough, tough journey to heaven.
“To this end, approved Catholic ‘adoration centres’ in Nigeria should really be for adoring Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, not where to intimidate, manipulate and extort people or where a priest attempts to create a personality cult by careless and insensitive utterances and drama.
“The Eucharist is a sacrament of healing. It’s expected of us to pray and wait patiently and expectantly, but do not time God or expect instant and dramatic results. Other than physical healing, there is also a very great need for inner healing.
“A sad chapter in our history as a nation which calls for the healing of memory is the unfortunate civil war which still fills many with very sad memories that are a challenge to social cohesion in the country. After over 55 years, the Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba and others need healing and purification of memory.
“We must all admit the war was wrong and immoral and should have never been fought.”