It is something to recall that the sort of prophecies seen amongst Catholic priests in Nigeria is not seen anywhere else around the world. The temptation of trying to leave the traditions of Catholicism and pursue something similar to later day Pentecostal church culture, has creeped into Catholic church in Nigeria.
It is like a good number of Catholic priests are emulating the open market and mega-stadium open-air-deliverance crusades, something that is not a common practice in Catholic tradition.
So, it is not something surprising to see the gathering of Cathilic Bishops express their views on this uncommon trend that is slowly turning into a common tradition in Catholic in Nigeria
Abuja – The Catholic Bishop’s Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), has warned its priests against “market place prophecies and visions, charismatic display of talents and material salvation’’
The President of the Conference, Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigama gave the warning on Sunday in Abuja during the Catholic Bishop’s Conference at Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Pro-Cathedral.
He admonished the priests to shun worldliness and materialism. He charged them not to succumb to the temptation of importing unwanted doctrines that would promote personality and curry favour.
“We must not be frightened into believing in God of “now, now’’, cajoled by mouth watering material attractions or ostentatious living of some ministers of God.
“We should emphasise the need for sober Christianity without tricks, rhetoric, fanfare and the craze for social media publicity.
“All priests must not compete with trendy pastors to see visions and utter prophecies because they sometimes cause psychological disposition.
“We should help people to interior conversion and attitudinal change,’’ he said.
He urged Christian religious leaders to admonish Christians to pray ceaselessly and evangelise through genuine witnessing and not wooing people with material things or any form of moral coercion.
“We must avoid melo-dramatic displays that look like modern broad-way shows.
“Catholic priests should avoid flamboyant spirituality and noisy liturgy and teach the people values of internalised prayers from the heart.
“The gifts of speaking in tongues, miracle and prophecies are good as long as they are genuine,’’ he said. Kaigama further urged Christians to help humanity in love to conquer poverty and narrow the yawning gap between the rich and the poor.
“It is only when we engage in works of mercy in favour of the needy that we can hope for a stable, peaceful and safe world,’’ he said.
We strongly hope that this message is well recieved within the ranks of the priests who are bringing this sort of tradtion into catholic church.