Former Governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi, has charged clerics to speak out against the ills of the society. Obi was speaking on Friday while delivering the keynote address at the 35th Methodist Bishops’ Conference at Methodists Theological Institute, Umuahia, Abia State.
Societal ills: Speak out, Peter Obi tells clerics
The former governor, who spoke on “The Church and Economic Recession in Nigeria: A Concern for Spiritual Reflection”, said that the vital lesson from the present economic recession in the country is that once the society is progressing, it is for the benefit of everybody; and once it is not progressing everybody suffers, including Church leaders.
Indicting some men of God for complicity in the economic recession, Obi lamented: “We have seen public officers who did not have a penny, within months they have built houses. Unfortunately, it is the money that should have been saved for the State that they squander. Rather than condemn such, some men of God preside over their thanksgiving and praise them to high heavens.”
As one of the solutions to recession, Obi appealed to churches “to encourage members to engage in productive ventures and discourage the culture of materialism.”
Decrying the practice whereby some Pastors hand over car and house keys to their members that are yet to be gainfully employed, Obi reminded them, quoting St James, that prayer without good work is dead. “It is good to have faith, but we cannot run the churches or our lives by mere recitation of pater nosters (Our father). A popular cliche says that heaven helps those that help themselves,” Obi said.
In his response, the Primate, His Grace, Archbishop Chukwuemeka Kanu, said that having listened to Mr. Peter Obi, the Church was right in inviting him.