NIGERIA: Muslims, Christians Worship Together on New Year Mass

KADUNA STATE, JANUARY 8, 2019 (CISA) – Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), on January 1, joined Catholic faithful for New Year Mass at St. Mary’s Parish, Samaru, Zaria, Kaduna State, as a move to strengthen inter religious harmony.

“We are happy to receive our brothers and sisters from Islamic faith here in our Church to celebrate with us today on January 1, 2019. It is true that sometimes we are scared of each other, this is because some of us are ignorant of the religion but we are all one,” Said Rev Fr Michael Ibrahim-Bazai, parish priest of St .Mary’s, Samaru, describing  the visit as “the first of its kind.”

According to reports by Vanguard News, the leader of the delegation, Prof. Isa Mshelgaru of Building Department, Faculty of Environmental Design, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, said the visit was meant to further boost the bond of relationship between the followers of two faiths toward fostering national unity.

He observed that going by the tenets of the two major religions in Nigeria, neither of them preached violence, but peace, love, unity and joy.

He described Christians as the closest people to Islam but lamented that Nigerians were divided by selfish politicians who hide under religion to achieve personal desires.

“Killing one another is an imaginary life; in the actual sense, it does not exist; we are all created by one God, we must therefore, endeavour to live together in peace with one another. We should share joy, happiness and sorrow together,” he said.

“When we are united as Nigerians, nothing will break us apart and nothing will go against the peace of the nation, not even Boko Haram or militants or anything else,” he added.

Fr Michael stressed the need for the two faiths to respect, accommodate, embrace and tolerate one another towards building a stronger society and by extension, a stronger nation.