By Josephine Obute and Clara Egbogota
Lagos – The Archbishop of Lagos, Adewale Martins, on Saturday urged the Catholic faithful to promote unity rather than division among the various ethnic groups in the country.
He gave the advice at the end of the 2019 edition of the annual Lagos Archdiocesan Lenten Pilgrimage held at Ave Maria Catholic Church, Lekki.
The pilgrimage had in attendance several faithful from no fewer than 145 parishes from the Archdiocese.
He said that though the elections had come and gone, some still had reservations and objections, adding that it should not be allowed to cause disunity among them as children of God.
” We prayed a lot before the elections, by the grace of God, the elections have come and gone, some felt that their prayers were answered, while others felt that their prayers were not answered.
” Whatever way we have felt, what is important for us at this time is to remain peaceful, to remain focused and to remain in prayer for the peace of the nation,” he said.
The archbishop appealed to politicians who lost during the elections to accept defeat or seek legal redress instead of overheating the polity .
He noted that before the governorship elections in Lagos state, there were the weeping up of ethnic sentiments and division that spread on the internet.
“My dear friends, we as Christians, particularly as followers of Christ, must ensure that we are not part of the weeping up of ethnic sentiments.
” For us, the waters of baptism should be thicker than the blood that flows in our veins.
“We are bound together by one body of Christ and we are all children of one God, the father and children of one body of Christ,” he said.
Archbishop Martins called for continued prayers by all for unity to prevail in the country rather than division on their journeys through this world.
” Let us pray for continued unity for our nation; and continued unity among ourselves, so that together, we can build a kingdom that we will be proud of, ” he said.
Speaking earlier during the reflection, Rev. Fr. Fidelis Umole advised the pilgrims to focus their lives on faith that would lead into a better relationship with God and their neighbours.
” Christians are faced with physical and mental challenges and the only solution is building on a solid faith in God,” he said.
He condemned Christians who always moved from one church to the other, looking for magic and not miracles, which is simply a sign of faithlessness.
“You see Christians running from pillar to post; expecting unnecessary solutions, they only end up multiplying their problems,” he said.
The cleric urged the pilgrims to grow their faith by reading the scripture daily, praying daily and without season, especially, when faced with challenges.
Umole also called on parents to play their roles in faith building in the family.
He assured them that the church would always compliment it by protecting the faith of its members. (NAN)