Remain Faithful Like St Joseph amid “challenges of different kinds”: Archbishop in Nigeria

The Local Ordinary of Abuja Archdiocese in Nigeria has urged the people of God in the West African nation to emulate St. Joseph’s faithfulness to the word of God in the face the challenges of life. 

In his Sunday, December 17 homily at St. Pope John Paul II Parish of his Metropolitan See, Archbishop Ignatius Ayau Kaigama highlighted some of the challenges Nigerians grapple with.

“When we face trials or challenges of different kinds – family problems, unemployment, insecurity, health challenges, political instability – we must strive to remain trusting, prayerful, obedient, and faithful like St. Joseph,” Archbishop Kaigama said.

The Nigerian Archbishop went on to highlight the virtues that St. Joseph demonstrated and implored on behalf of Nigerians, “May the Lord make you, to be men and women of spiritual honor, trusting, prayerful, obedient, and faithful like St. Joseph.”

Archbishop Kaigama further urged Nigerians to seek to know God’s will in their respecting lives and live that will in the the example of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph.


“Joseph and Mary both cooperated fully with God's plan. They teach us to be faithful servants of God and stewards of His mystery,” the Catholic Church leader who started his Episcopal Ministry in April 1995 as the Bishop of Nigeria’s Jalingo Diocese said.

He added, “We often prefer to have our will done, and sometimes in prayer instead of begging and pleading with God, we command Him or give Him an ultimatum. Let us learn from the obedience of Joseph who at God’s command took Mary as his wife.”

Archbishop Kaigama noted the difference in personality between king Ahaz in the first reading during the fourth week of Advent in which the king relied on his strength and unholy alliances to protect Judah and St. Joseph’s complete trust in God while protecting Jesus.

“We should avoid the mistake of King Ahaz who instead of putting his trust in God rather chose to trust in human means by making an ungodly alliance with Assyria,” the 64-year-old Nigerian Archbishop who has been at the helm of the Archdiocese since November 2019 said.

He went on to reflect on St. Joseph’s dream and warned that despite the fact that some dreams are heavenly inspirations, paying “too much attention to them is foolhardy.”

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“There is something to learn too about dreams. Many of us take our dreams as if they are a gospel message. We forget that dreams are a product of our unconscious mind and imagination,” he said.

“Some dreams in some rare cases are inspired visions from heaven,” Archbishop Kaigama said, adding that the warning Mary and Joseph received not to return to their home country is one of the heaven-inspired dreams.

He also cautioned against the superstitious nature of dreams, saying, “Because you see someone in your dream and when you suffer a misfortune you attribute it to the person is pure superstition.”

Use the Christmas Season to move closer to God rather than becoming “complacent and distant from Him,” Archbishop Kaigama further said, and added, “We must also be drawn to those in our midst who are suffering or marginalized or in captivity (especially the victims of bandits and kidnappers).”

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.