By BANJI AJIBOYE
Prelate of Methodist Church Nigeria, His Eminence, Dr. Samuel Kanu Uche, has bemoaned the spate of bloodletting for ritual purposes which has become pervasive in some churches today.
The cleric who remains one of the highly revered clergymen in Nigeria, expressed his bitterness on this and other issues of national interest in a very brief chat with Church Times Nigeria in his Westley House office, Marina Lagos, recently.
Speaking with palpable groan in his voice, Dr. Uche regretted that the greed for money and unconscionable quest for demonic power had driven so many young pastors to perpetrate much evil hitherto unheard of in Christendom.
“What we read and hear all over the place nowadays about some of these yet-to- be saved people who call themselves ministers of God is appalling.
“It is unheard of. It is absurd, wicked and callous to have sacrifices and bloodletting in places of worship.
“Such acts are not only utterly debasing to the house of God but also constitute the height of man’s inhumanity to fellow man
“It has drawn ridicule to the Church of God from other religions; though it happens in other religious circles but let the truth be told, it is an aberration in the Christendom, the body of Christ”; the prelate decried.
He, therefore, canvassed that Christians should retrace their steps to the original base of fervent faith.
The cleric who is in his second tenure as head of the Methodist Church Nigeria based on a 99 per cent endorsement by election, clarified that though, he was not against Pentecostalism, however, cautioned against the worship of Mammon even as he reminded people of the Biblical injunction against the pursuit of wealth at all cost.
“Though I am not against the growth of the Church and expansion of the gospel via Pentecostalism but Christian leaders should take caution against the worship of Mammon and quest for demonic power, mindful of the Biblical warning that ‘the love of money is the root of all evil’ (1Timothy Chapter 6 v. 10)”.
“We the mainline churches do not preach money and prosperity sermons. We know our God is a God of prosperity; yet people should work with honesty.
Commenting on state of the nation, the frank-talking cleric vowed to continue speaking the truth to power, no matter whose ox is gored.
He described typical Nigerian politicians as more deadly than the anopheles mosquitoes whose bites infect people with the dreaded malaria parasite that often kills its victim fast.
Prelate Uche lamented that most politicians today usually promise the electorate heaven on earth to get to position only to clinch power and become some sort of lords over the people, pursuing personal agenda and serving only their own selfish interest.
“Most of our politicians in this country (Nigeria) are mosquitoes. In fact, they are worse, more deadly than the anopheles mosquitoes as they suck the nation sick with so much rapacious greed for such amount of money which they don’t even need in their entire life time.
“I mean this is crazy. It is sickening. They don’t care whatever happens to the common man whose interest they are expected to be protecting in the first instance.
“Service to the nation has, in fact, become secondary if at all it is still in their agenda.
“Attention to security of citizens is near zero; whereas, security of lives and property of citizens should be of paramount concern in the heart of every reasonable leader at any cadre of governance.
He posited that “the man who proclaimed that 2019 election would be a jihad should be in jail by now”.
The prelate wondered why a political contestant should boast that if he doesn’t win an election there will be trouble.
The Doctor of Theology with over 44 years of service in God’s vineyard, insisted that the President Muhammadu Buhari government should firm up the security machinery of the country while the menace of unemployment and its attendant social vices should be tackled with a sense of urgency.
“We want security, employment for the multitude of our youth many of whom are already taking to all manners of evil such as hooliganism, cultism, thuggery and other vices owing to frustration from unemployment after leaving school.
“Let there be good roads, food and other facilities that will enhance basic comfort of life for the people” Uche demanded.
He insisted that for as long as it takes governments at all levels to do the right thing for the people, he would continue to tell them the truth, no matter how hard it sounds; even as he reminded those in power that everybody is equal before God; hence no government should place one religion or ethnic group over the other.
He advised young people to emulate Christ and the lifestyle of godly men. “I know that I am not greedy. Yes, we are not flamboyant; neither are we lavish.
“If you give me an aircraft, I will reject it because the Church needs money to fund a lot of things for its members.
“Our focus is heaven. If you are not heaven-focused, you will become my enemy.
“No cultism, no hard drug, no hard drink, no laziness and other social vices.
“So, our youth should retrace their steps to God and ensure that they don’t miss salvation which is most important.”; he admonished.
Prelate Uche also enjoined his fellow religious leaders to always seek, preach and practise tolerance and peaceful coexistence among their congregational members.
“As the Bible instructs in Hebrews 12 v.14 that we should ‘seek peace with all men and holiness without which no man can see God’.
“Conceive no evil against your fellow citizen and you’ll find out that once that principle goes round, Nigeria will be back to its greatness.” ; he assured.