He adds, “I came of age as a Theologian during these 10 years of the leadership of Pope Francis. The way the Holy Father speaks invigorates me. I am very excited to write theology around Pope Francis. I get him, just like a child would understand a father.”
Fr. Stan’s book, “A Poor and Merciful Church: The Illuminative Ecclesiology of Pope Francis”, draws from the Holy Father’s invitation to be a merciful Church that brings healing to the wounded.
Published in 2018, the book answers the question, “What will we see in the Church that will point people to Jesus?”
In the book, Fr. Stan argues that people are leaving, especially the Catholic Church, and joining Pentecostal Churches for various reasons, especially the Church’s failure to point them to Jesus.
“Many people are fleeing the Catholic Church. We may not see this because of the rapid growth of the continent’s population, but the Church is losing followers. People are losing their faith in God,” he says, and adds, “Perhaps, what the people wish to see is a poor and merciful Church that is open to everyone, especially the wounded that Pope Francis talks about.”
His other book, “Ecological Ethics and Spirituality for Cosmic Flourishing: African Commentary on Laudato Si’” published in 2022, talks about reforms in the Catholic Church. It poses the questions, “Is Pope Francis a reformer?” and “Has Pope Francis contributed to a new way of reforming the Catholic Church?”
Published in 2019, Fr. Stan’s other book, “Love, Joy, and Sex: African Conversations on Amoris Laetitia and Gospel of Family in a Divided World” looks at the synod on the family, which he says was “very divisive”.
“The Synod on the Family brought about controversy in handling issues of separation and divorce in the Church, same-sex marriages, among others, and several authors of the book were guided by the message of Pope Francis in accompanying those who feel that they no longer belong to the Church. The book is about bringing these people healing to see the path of reconciliation,” he says.
The Nigerian Catholic Priest has edited the “Handbook of African Catholicism”, which was published in 2022 to provide readily available and readable resources for Catholics in Africa. Drawing contributions from many authors, the book provides such information as the facilities managed by the Catholic Church in various African countries, Catholic saints in Africa, and so on.
To the member of the Clergy of the Catholic Diocese of Awgu in Nigeria, Pope Francis is a notable Theologian who has pumped new energy into Theology and influenced the Nigerian Professor’s work.