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May 28, 2018

Medical Tourism: Let the change begin

Beside food and shelter, man’s greatest need is health. Good health is vital and that is why people can give anything in exchange for it.  Those who are medically challenged and can afford it go the extra mile to get the best medical care for themselves and their loved ones.  This is why medical tourism is booming, and a nation like Nigeria, with poor infrastructure and medical facilities, is a prime target. Everyone knows Nigerians love life, comparatively, and try their best to live long.  Anything that spells ill health or untimely death is hated passionately.  If in doubt, cast…

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Religion is NOT the Problem: Revisiting Prof. Soyinka’s Stigmatization of Religion (4)

Our elites, intellectuals and political leaders are yet to have the courage, and capability to address our country’s problem as a nation-state in a creative way for truth, peace and justice to reign in our land. It was for this kind of naïve approach and attitude to our perennial and unresolved historical problem that we have had the 1966 military coup and the counter coup, the year after in 1967. The 1954 first pogrom against the Igbo and other Easterners living in Northern Nigeria was in furtherance of this unresolved historical problem. The 1966 Second Northern Nigeria pogrom, mother of…

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Ash Wednesday: Remember you are dust

THE HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF ASH WEDNESDAY LITURGY Historically, the ashes of burned objects such as plants, animals, human bodies and dust are commonly found in use among ancient peoples for religious, magical and medical purposes. Among these ashes there are certain ashes or dust that have sacred character and power, above all, ashes or dust signify mortality,’ mourning and penance or repentance. In line with this ritual, Christian liturgical usage and symbolism of ashes or dust is traced to Jewish tradition. Presently, the Roman liturgy uses ashes only on Ash Wednesday liturgy. The practice of all the faithful receiving ashes…

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Do you know that God is a politician?

People seem to divorce religion from politics. More often than not, men of God criticize political office holders, and distance themselves from playing politics. Some say that politics in a dirty game as some erroneously say that lawyers are liars.Those exercising political power appear to agree with the men of God that political matters are exclusively for those in government and expect the men of God to keep off, and preoccupy themselves with only religious issues, and leave political issues for identified politicians to handle. This is a misnomer; a clear manifestation of ignorance by anybody who thinks along that…

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The futility of worry

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

Material success is considered by many to be necessary sign of divine favour, and this principle provides the basis for the prosperity doctrine held by many Pentecostal/Evangelical Christian denominations. Today, however, Jesus negates this concept by insisting that we seek the Kingdom of God first and most importantly, and every other thing will follow. Material pursuits are good and desirable but they must be subordinated to the pursuit of righteousness – our ticket to eternal beatitude. When the pursuit of wealth comes first, allegiance to Christ takes the back seat. Our possessions will start to possess us and, instead of…

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Massive exploitation of students at IMSU

It is very disheartening to observe that the good intention of Governor Rochas Okorocha in extending the Free Education Programme of his administration to Imo State University Students has been converted as a money making business by the lecturers of IMSU. Some of these lecturers mostly in the School of Business Studies are now channelling what would have been paid as tuition fees to themselves by forcing their students to buy their own published so called textbooks at very highly inflated prices. These so called textbooks, which can best be described as pamphlets are published semester by semester on a…

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Religion is NOT the Problem: Revisiting Prof. Soyinka’s Stigmatization of Religion (3)

This means that the African leader’s pro-African stance to dare and question the past mistakes against his or her country is at the root of modern African problem, and NOT religion. Read from the previous page here The African leader who choose not to address the historical mistakes in his country and correct it in the light of the present suffering of his people, has never received any rebuke from any of the centres of power that still regard themselves as friends of Africa. Even when such an African leader or Head of State is committing various kinds of crime…

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Religion is NOT the Problem: Revisiting Prof. Soyinka’s Stigmatization of Religion (2)

True enough, there are causes of violence impeded in some religious beliefs and elements. This does not mean, however, that there is a direct link between religion and violence. Because to hold the view linking religion with violence is to obscure authentic thought about people’s belief in the One True God, who is the Creator and Father of us all. The purity of religious faith in the One True God must therefore, be always recognized as the principle and source of Love between human beings. This observation is important because it helps to correct the wrong impression created in some…

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“GAMBLING: THE NEW SOCIAL ILL” – A REJOINDER

Let me use this medium to react to the editorial in The Leader newspaper of Sunday, June 5 2016 (p.2) with the above caption. After a careful perusal of the write-up, I quickly deduced that the writer wrote from the point of view of gambling and not lottery. Gambling and lottery are quite opposed to one another. For the sake of clarity, let us try to define the two concepts. The Oxford Advanced Learners Dictionary defined gamble as playing games of chance, etc. for money. It further described gamble as risking money by investing in something. This same source defined…

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Trumpism as The Trump-Card of Eroding Western Civilisation (1)

PREAMBLE In this article, we shall attempt at focusing chiefly on Donald Trump and by extension delineate, succinctly, the preponderant negative impact of radicalism or fanaticism on the world. Indeed, on how the world seem to be stung to a stage of stupor by the alarming influence of an apparently infinitesimal percentage of a group of people who seem better organised and truculently systematic in executing their programme of engulfing the rest of humanity like the amoeba. Some ideas expressed in this article that touch on fanaticism are apologies to Dr. Emmanuel Tanya, a well-known, German psychiatrist.   TRUMPISM For…

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Leadership by example: Barack Obama the great…Elsewhere in America (6)

(11) OBAMA THE GREAT AND THE REST OF HUMANITY   As OBAMA took his exit from the political arena of American democracy there aren’t just a few who paid their glowing tributes to the great president of the United States. Look at a few ‘comments’ or ‘tributes’ by thousands of individuals who see and think about OBAMA as I do. JUST A FEW OF THE SELECTED QUOTES!   (i)   “Being English, I may see things from a totally different perspective! I see a President who, being thoroughly graceful, has done a great job. Hadn’t he lowered your deficit in an…

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Turning the other cheek

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

Today, we have one of the most radical religious teachings ever – to turn the other cheek when we are smacked. Last week, we were challenged to exceed the righteousness of the scribes and the Pharisees. This time, Jesus invites us to imitate the perfect love of God the father when responding to personal insults and injuries – with grace, patience, forgiveness, and generosity. Our Lord wants us to overturn the culture of vengeance and violence by not always insisting on getting our own way, but rather going out of our way to do good to others, especially when they…

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Religion is Not the Problem: Revisiting Prof. Soyinka’s Stigmatization of Religion (1)

Our renowned Nobel laureate in Literature, one of Africa’s most respected intellectual giants, Prof. Wole Soyinka, is recently, quoted as having accused religion as the cause of Nigeria’s woes and indeed of the world in general. Soyinka asked that religion be tamed and stigmatized. According to the Nigerian Punch Newspaper of January 13, 2017, Prof. Soyinka at the presentation of a book, Religion and the Making of Nigeria, written by Prof. Olufemi Vaughan, said, among other things: “President Muhammadu Buhari had said if Nigeria did not kill corruption, corruption would kill the country.” Condemning killings in the Southern Kaduna in…

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Ezeship tussle in Obosima – Ohaji may boil again, Government should intervene

Crises in Ohaji have claimed so many lives amidst tension resulting to food shortage and militancy in the entire state. This was not only caused by Ezeship tussles and crises but by the undemocratic tendencies of the powers that be on issues affecting the communities. In each case the mafia so glorified until “the come come came”. Regrettably the mother and the worst of these crises loom high in Obosima Autonomous community. The community is accommodating more than 70% of those displaced by similar crises in Ohaji. Any crises therefore will be calamitous. Barely 24 days after the memorial service…

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JESUS CHRIST OUR TRUE AND BEST LOVER

Tension in Igboland Catholics begin 30-day prayer, fasting as Court proscribes IPOB

The 14th February every Year has come to be known across the World as Valentine Day or Lover’s Day. For those who know that St. Valentine, a Catholic Priest, was martyred in the cause of approving and celebrating true married love among young people, the 14th February on which day St. Valentine was killed has now become a special day to remember a caring lover of young people and a promoter of genuine love, especially married love. For those who are just excited about the dream, idea and experience of love, Lover’s Day has become a day to dream, to…

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Leadership by example: Barack Obama the great…Elsewhere in America (5)

(7) GREAT FAMILY MAN: Husband and Father: One blissful successful marriage with one of the best mothers and wives in the history of marriage encounter. It seemed that right from birth God set them aside and prepared them to join together to become a paradigm of what married life is all about. Unlike most other turbulent marriages in modern times, no divorces and divorce suits and re-marriages, no suspicions with regard to extramarital affairs! Behold too, Michele Obama, the perfect wife and match of her life partner. The Igbo people of Nigeria would address her as “Oyiridiya” (carbon copy of…

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At the root of the matter

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

Christian discipleship encompasses a lot more than external ritualism! To be worth it, our piety must pierce the heart and infuse the entirety of one’s being. Thus, we are challenged to go beyond the outward observances of the Law onto a deep-rooted healing of the human heart, as a remedy for sin. The people of Jesus’ time viewed the Mosaic Law as the ultimate expression of the will of God, the self-revelation of God, and the complete code of conduct for the regulation of civil and religious matters. Yet, the greater emphasis was on the external dos and don’ts rather…

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Leadership by example: Barack Obama the great …Elsewhere in America (4)

(4) MATTERS OF THE HEART: ACCOMMODATION AND TOLERANCE:   Christians, Jews, Moslems, Buddhists, Non-believers, name them, peoples of different faiths, tongues and beliefs, should live together and respect each other’s beliefs and culture. Even gays, lesbians and other men and women of different sexual orientation, views and attitudes, have place in society and communities of the world. America is a nation of immigrants and should therefore find ways to accommodate new arrivals as well as refugees. Center of Obama social agenda is no doubt ‘equality and social justice’. There is no doubt that Obama has been criticized for being the…

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The Gambia: A lesson to African dictators

Since embattled President Yahya Jammeh of the Gambia feed on self exile three weeks ago, well meaning people have been calling on other sit-tight dictators in Africa and elsewhere in the world to learn a lesson from his fall. The call is addressed to other despotic and oppressive rulers especially in Africa, who have refused to take a cue from the fate of the late Liberian dictator, Samuel Doe, Laurent Gbagbo and Robert Gue of Ivory Coast, Col Muammar Gadaffi of Libya and, Idi Amin Dada of Uganda, among so many others. It would be recalled that Jammeh, Head of…

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LIGHT CAN ONLY SHINE

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

In the Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), Pope Francis said: “Goodness always tends to spread. Every authentic experience of truth and goodness seeks by its very nature to grow within us, and any person who has experienced a profound liberation becomes more sensitive to the needs of others. As it expands, goodness takes root and develops”. The point to note here is that goodness is something that one could not keep to oneself without sharing with others. Any sort of goodness that can be concealed in a person cannot be authentic and is not founded on…

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