“Still nursing pain”: Nigerian Governor on 2022 Pentecost Attack on Catholic Worshippers

St. Francis Xavier Owo Catholic Parish of Ondo Diocese. Credit: Courtesy Photo

One year after the attack on Catholic worshippers, who had gathered at St. Francis Xavier Owo Catholic Parish of Ondo Diocese for Pentecost Sunday Eucharistic celebration, and the people of God in the Southwestern region of Nigeria are yet to come to terms with the events of that fateful day, the State Governor has said. 

The 5 June 2022 attack that involved several gunmen left at least 40 Catholic worshippers dead, among them women and children.

“We are still grappling with the shock from the attack. One year after, we are still nursing our pain. The scars of the heavy blow dealt to us will always remind us of our losses and the pain we endured,” Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State is quoted as saying in a report published Tuesday, June 6 report.

Governor Oluwarotimi adds, "The horrific attack was a dagger drawn into our hearts. It was the dastardliest act that could happen in any society. Our people were mindlessly killed by cowards and mass murderers. It was a tale of pain, sorrow, and fear.”

The Nigerian politician who has been at the helm of Ondo State since 2017 says that the 2022 Pentecost Sunday attack on Catholic worshippers was a desecration of a place of worship, which he says was “turned into a slaughter slab”.


He says that although his government has reached out to the needy following the attack, “we understand that no amount of money can fill the void left by our loved ones.”

“Our efforts are geared toward easing the burden created by the death of breadwinners in the families,” Governor Oluwarotimi adds.

He also says that the State is constructing a fitting Memorial Park in honor of the deceased and thanks the people of God in the West African nation for supporting the victims of the attack.

A Catholic Priest in the West African nation has proposed the beatification of those who lost their lives in the 2022 Pentecost Sunday attack.

In a statement to the Catholic Pontifical and charity foundation, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) International that ACI Africa obtained, Fr. Emmanuel Faweh says, “For me, as a Priest in the Holy Roman Catholic Church, it would not be a bad idea if the Church decides to open a cause for the beatification of those who lost their lives in that attack, because they died professing their faith.”

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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.