The 60-year-old Nigerian Bishop who has been at the helm of Oyo Diocese since November 2009 reflected on the worldwide threats posed by COVID-19 and said that the pandemic threatened the church but did not succeed against it.
Still among us, Bishop Badejo said, “Conflicts, very high insecurity, injustice, discrimination, violence, banditry, ritual killing, kidnapping and all sorts of vices and combine with a collapsed economy to threaten life and almost make things unbearable for us. It is even worse for some other Nigerians.”
During the Chrism Mass, the Catholic Church leader who has been a member of the Vatican Dicastery for Communication since his appointment last December urged members of the Clergy under his Pastoral care to teach, admonish and guide the ignorant saying that in itself is a great form of healing.
“We must also heed the outcry of the sheep, their request for us to live authentic lives, to be coherent and be committed to the mandate given to us by Christ. It would be the fulfillment of what Pope Francis asked of priests to be shepherds who smell the smell of the sheep,” Bishop Badejo said.
He said that the role of the faithful in the church is to reconfirm their identity as the body of Christ, and urged the faithful to always pray for their Priests and Bishops in order to walk within the grace of God.
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“You are asked to pray for your Priests and together pray for your Bishop that he may be a more perfect image of Christ, the Good Shepherd, Teacher, and Servant. May God mercifully hear our prayers,” Bishop Badejo implored.
He said that Chrism Mass involves praying together “over the instruments of our ministry.”
During the celebration of Chrism Mass, Bishop Badejo said, several activities take place including consecration of Chrism oil for use by presbyters in the initiation of new Christians and Priests renewing the promises they made at their Priestly ordination.
He said that Chrism, a sacred oil that is consecrated only by the Bishop, “is an expression of unity of the local Church around her Bishop.”
Bishop Badejo explained in reference to the sacred oil made from olive and perfumed with balsam, “It’s not the same as oil blessed simply by the initiative of any powerful, intelligent, rich or gifted pastor, visionary or healer… it is divinely processed.”
Silas Mwale Isenjia is a Kenyan journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communication from Moi University in Kenya. Silas has vast experience in the Media production industry. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.