Bishop Odetoyinbo ordains 4 Deacons for Abeokuta Diocese
The Bishop, Catholic Diocese of Abeokuta, Most Rev. Dr. Peter Odetoyinbo has called on parents of priests as well as entire faithful to desist from interfering in the ‘life’ of priests, saying that faithful especially parents had misled many priests and have made them to lose focus.
The Bishop, who made the call at the diaconate ordination of four deacons at St. Mark Catholic Church, Owode-Yewa, said, by the virtue of their ordination, they are belong to the Church, and should not be distracted from following the dictate of Christ and His Church.
According to him, “by their ordination, they are now properties of the Church. I am their father. Allow me to raise them in accordance with the guidelines of the Church. Desist from interfering in their affairs. Allow them to be raised and brought up according to the mind of the Church. Whenever any priest is either transferred to rural parishes of disciplined, there would be complains. Some people will go to the extent of saying the Bishop hate such a priest. How will I hate them? I taught many of them in the Seminary. Now, I am their Bishop, I am their ‘father’, how will I hate my children? It is my duty to guide them to the right path. Considering the huge amount of money the diocese pays every year, how will I hate them?”.
“Do not destroy them and their vocation with your actions and inactions. Desist from interfering in issues you know nothing about. If any priest is being cautioned for anything, it is for the salvation of the people of God and pride of the Church. It is my duty to protect the priests and their vocation. Allow them to do their duties, you should support them with your prayers, encourage them and caution them when you notice that they are going astray. It is part of the duties of Parish Pastoral Council, Laity Council, CMON, and CWON to encourage the priests because they are ordained to protect you, the people of God. It is our duty as priests to encourage you and you too must encourage us with your actions”. He added.
Earlier, in his homily, the host Parish Priest, Rev Fr. Chigozie Nwigwe, SDV said “with their ordination as deacons in the Church, they are meant to serve the Church of Christ and His people diligently and with humility. Diaconate ordination is an office and ministry that ushers the ordinands into service in obedience to their superiors, the people of God and the poor.”
He added, “the office you occupy should speak about you and not your parents. Therefore, you must prepare for the ministry of the priesthood, and be prepared to work in any parish and apostolate. Plant the seed of obedience so that you will not offend yourselves. Do not be priest for anybody. If you do, you will be disappointed”, he concluded.
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