23 April 2019

Nigeria: Pope Called Buhari On Leah Sharibu's Matter, Says Catholic Bishop

Pope Francis has waded into the case of Leah Sharibu, a schoolgirl abducted by a faction of Boko Haram at Dapchi village, Yobe State over a year ago.

The Catholic Bishop of Nnewi, Most Rev. Hilary Okeke disclosed this to journalists yesterday in Nnewi, Anambra State.

While expressing optimism that Leah and others in similar fate would be rescued, Okeke said the Nigerian Catholic bishops were not relenting in that respect.

He said, "The Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria had formally involved the Holy father, Pope Francis on the matter.

"The papacy has reached out to President Muhammadu Buhari on the issue. So, we are not relenting."

He condemned what he called the rising spate of idol worship and neo-paganism among Nigerian Christians.

He urged Christians to return to God by doing away with idolatry in every ramification.

Acknowledging that the people had traditional and cultural practices before the advent of Christianity, the bishop noted that most of such practices had been refined by the church.

He added, "That is the reason the church accepts only culture and traditions that have no form of idolatry. Idolatry remains the greatest sin against God."

"Any Catholic who wishes to take any title must sign an undertaking that no pagan rituals or idolatrous sacrifices would be involved, or such person would be excommunicated."

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