NIGERIA: Archbishop Kaigama Encourages Inter-faith Collaboration

By Njoki Githinji

ABUJA, JULY 7, 2020 (CISA)– Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigama of the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja has commended Muslims and Christians for their collaboration in seeking solutions during Covid-19 and encouraged them to keep finding areas of collaboration for the sake of harmony, peaceful co-existence and progress.

“I am so highly impressed and edified that the leadership of the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC) inspired and encouraged Christians and Muslims in Nigeria, each according to their faith tradition to fast and pray to seek God’s intervention for the defeat of the Covid-19 disease. This positive intervention is what the adherents of the two major religions, Christianity and Islam need to do more often, to always seek areas of collaboration to promote social harmony, progress and peaceful co-existence,” the archbishop said during the interdenominational prayer session for the defeat of the Covid-19 pandemic at the national Christian Centre in Abuja on July 5.

The prelate pointed how the Coronavirus is altering global affairs and social existence and acknowledged that after it is over, society will still feel its social consequences for decades. He however emphasized on the importance of taking lessons from this extraordinary experience.

“The spiritual persons will make good use even of the inconveniences and misfortunes of this life, growing in patient endurance, hope, and charity. The unspiritual persons will simply grow more bitter, resentful, suspicious and ill-tempered by the same experience. We are spiritual, so, let us learn our lessons from this global calamity about our common humanity, the fragility of our lives and to rediscover the things that really matter,” Kaigama said.

“In the pain and challenges of Covid-19, let us learn these lessons: the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom; repent of our sins; love without boundaries and consider the interest of others above our personal interests,” he added.

Prayer and repentance, he said has been a channel through which the Church in previous difficult times, sought relief and encouraged that prayer should be “consistent, persevering and fervent.”

“In the face of famines, wars and plagues throughout history, the Church has regularly exhorted Christians to repentance and prayer as we are doing today, believing that if we repent, God will hear us,” he said.

The interdenominational prayer session was hosted by the Christian Association of Nigeria.