- The CAN president, Samson Ayokunle, has disclosed that the Catholic Church has returned to the association, five years after its exit
- Ayokunle gave thanks to all the Christian leaders who were involved in making the return possible, and especially thanked the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria
- The cleric noted that it was important that unity be maintained among Christians at a time when the nation is going through so much hardship
Five years after exiting the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), the Catholic Church has returned to the organization, The Cable reports.
The development was made public in a statement released by the CAN president, Samson Ayokunle, on Sunday, February 18.
NAIJ.com notes that the Catholic Church had left CAN in January 2013, as it opined that it was exiting the organization temporarily, over "some recent attitudes, utterances and actions of the national leadership of CAN which in our opinion negate the concept of the foundation of the association and the desire of Our Lord Jesus Christ.”
However, speaking on the return, Ayokunle described the development as one of the best things to happen since he became president of the association.
He stated: “Their return is one of the best things that have been happening since I was given the mandate to become the president of CAN.
“One of my visions for CAN is to bring our Catholic brothers and sisters back to the fold; and I must acknowledge the support and understanding of my brother in Christ, Most Rev Ignatius Kaigama, President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria and his team.
“I give kudos to all the principal officers, the directors and some Christian leaders in the country for their support and understanding while the dialogue lasted."
While expressing his profound joy, Ayokunle said his prayer is that the body of Christ in the country will remain one forever.
“At a time like this when Christians are almost becoming endangered species in Nigeria, when churches are being denied the certificate of occupancy especially in the core north, when Christians are being denied key public offices and when the church is expected to speak for the voiceless, especially over the economic and social hardship in our country, we cannot afford to be at war with one another.
“CAN is united in diversity. Jesus Christ prayed for the Church shortly before He returned to heaven in John chapter 17," he added.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously reported that President Muhammadu Buhari was informed by the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), that due to what they described as ‘failure on the part of government’, his goodwill is depleting.
The comments were made by the CBCN president, Ignatius Kaigama, as he led his delegation to meet with the president at Aso Rock Villa.
Kaigama stated that the bishops had a moral responsibility to tell Buhari the truth, as they were spiritual leaders. He said that they had first-hand information about what people were going through, because they work with people at the grass-root level.
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