Kaduna (Nigeria) — Former Nigerian Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, has expressed dismay over lack of unity among different denominations of the Church in Nigeria.
He therefore called on Christians in the country to be guided by the word of God for the overall unity of the body of Christ.
The former Head of State lamented that the different denominations in the Church have caused dissatisfaction, stressing that the word of God should be the watchword of every believer.
General Gowon was speaking in Kaduna, northwest Nigeria at the official inauguration of Congress of Northern Nigeria Christians, CNNC.
The former Head of State stressed the need for different denominations to be united based on the scripture, adding that without the word of God, it might not be possible for the Congress to achieve its noble objectives.
He enjoined officials of CNNC to work in harmony with other Christian bodies to propagate the true word of God for the salvation, peace and unity of the region and the country in general.
Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara in his remarks, observed that the biggest problem confronting the Church is disobedience, adding that unless the Church realises that, it would continue to have problems.
He enjoined Christians to learn to forgive, stressing that it was only when believers forgive that they would be forgiven by the Almighty.
The Speaker observed that denominations have taken the centre stage of the Church other than the unity that supposed to help Christians work as a family irrespective of their denominations.
“The word of God should guide every Christian in all spheres of life. Until the Church understands this, the better for it or it will continue in endless challenges,” he noted.
Dogara praised the founders of CNNC for their foresight in bringing Christians in the north together while assuring them of his support to the Congress.
The interim Chairman of CNNC, Professor Adamu Baikie, said that the congress was not a political organization neither a front for any political party. “We shall resist any attempt to clandestinely use the platform of the Congress to promote the political interests of any individual or group of individuals.”
He added, “We are also committed to creating awareness among Northern Nigeria Christians to stand firm against every form of violence, discrimination and intimidation being meted out to any citizen of this country; and above all, to work towards the unity and indivisibility of the Nigerian State. These, among other things, are the basic tenets of the objectives we intend to pursue.
“We wish to make it clear that we are not unmindful of the fact that there are other organizations and/ or religious associations that abound in the country, the North in particular. We acknowledge their pioneering efforts and appreciate the work they have done and have continued to do. We have no desire whatsoever to undermine their efforts or obliterate their very coexistence with all people irrespective of religion, tribe or ethniccity.
“We shall eschew bitterness; we shall promote and uphold the principles of mutual respect and understanding as is expected of decent people. A machinery will be put in place to concretize the involvement of other associations in the activities of the Congress on a mutual basis having regard to the unifying objectives of the congress–