The President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria and Archbishop of Benin City, Most Rev. Augustine Obiora Akubeze has reiterated the obligatory need for all faithful to use their resources to promote the evangelization apostolate of the Church. The Archbishop made this remark in his homily at the celebration of the Mass for this year’s National Conference of the Charismatic Renewal Conference, held recently at Issele-Uku, Delta State. The theme of the homily was: The use of money to Advance the Growth of the Church.”
“The Archbishop declared: “All of us have the obligation to help others seek the presence of God. We do this through evangelization. We use our resources to help others to seek the presence of God.” He continued: “The use of money to advance the building up of the body of Christ is what we must all be involved in. Christ invites us to use our resources to promote the gospel.”
Archbishop Akubeze however noted that attachment to money is not in fulfilment of evangelization obligation, adding that this makes the donor or donors to give very little towards the apostolate of the Church. He went further to outline the different groups of donors in this perspective.
His words: “There are some wealthy people who are not ready to donate money for Church purposes. Some will donate only when it will lead to public acknowledgement. Some will give money only when it is a priest that they like that has asked for them for help. Some will give because the Priest is from their ethnic group. Some will give because they feel that the Priest is a Charismatic person. Some will give because they believe in the ministry of the Priest. What is the reason for your giving to support the Church? Many of us need to purify our motives for giving to support the Church. You give to support the Church because you are part of the mystical body of Christ that has the serious obligation to spread the Gospel.”
The CBCN President used the readings of the Mass to buttress his point and spoke extensively on: the role of the Catholic Charismatic renewal of Nigeria today, noting that the charism of the group and their passion for the work of evangelization comes from the Holy Spirit. He urged the members of the group to continue to use their resources willingly at the service of the Church, reminding them that: “only hearts full of love can receive the Holy Spirit. Only hearts that do not have hatred will be rekindled by the Holy Spirit.”
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