Don’t lord it over congregation, Okoh counsels new bishop

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The Primate of Anglican Communion in Nigeria, Most Rev. Nicholas Okoh, on Wednesday advised the new Bishop of Lagos Mainland, Rt. Rev. Akinpelu Johnson, not to lord it over the congregation.

Okoh gave the advice at the enthronement service of Johnson as the new Bishop of the Diocese of Lagos Mainland, held at the Cathedral Church of St Jude Ebute Meta, Lagos.

Johnson came on board following the retirement of the former bishop, Most Rev. Adebayo Akinde, after clocking 70.

Okoh urged the new bishop to oversee the church with truth, justice and charity.

He also advised Johnson to respect and defend the rights and privileges of the Church.

In a goodwill message, the Archbishop Emeritus, Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, Anthony Cardinal Okogie, called on religious leaders not to reduce the gospel to an instrument for attaining material prosperity.

“You should preach religion in ways that liberate, not the ways that insult the intelligence of the people who throng our places of worship.

“We must not use the word of God to foster intellectual laziness and fatalism in our people.

“The gospel must not be reduced to an instrument for attaining material prosperity,’’ Okogie said.

He urged the new bishop to bear witness to the truth of the gospel and “read it prayerfully, preach it dutifully and apply it prudently.”

In his remark, the newly-enthroned bishop promised to be diligent in prayer, work on God’s agenda and maintain close relationship with Him.

“I urge each and every one of us to live a life of holiness and proclaim the gospel of the Lord. I want each and every one of us to reassess ourselves.

“I promise to be sincere and straight forward with everybody; my yes will be my yes, and my no my no,’’ Johnson said. (NAN)

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