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May 21, 2018

The Shepherd and the Herdsman

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

  On this Good Shepherd Sunday, we acknowledge God as the universal shepherd of humanity, and ourselves as the sheep of his flock. Today is also the World Day of Prayer for Vocations! In the Old Testament, the Patriarchs of Israel were shepherds just like their early kings, and there are countless descriptions of Israel as the flock of God. For example, Psalm 23 recounts what the Good Shepherd does for his sheep, that: “Fresh and green are the pastures where he gives me repose. Near restful waters he leads me, to revive my drooping spirit” (Ps. 23:2-3a). Now, among…

Fertile for the Kingdom

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

Today’s readings are all about fertility, planting, harvesting and fruitfulness. The sacred authors of Scripture make use of everyday material elements to convey the not-so-easy-to-understand truths of the Kingdom of God. In the First Reading, the Lord uses rainfall as a metaphor to underscore the certainty of his words coming to fulfillment. Every word spoken by the Lord must, without fail, come to pass! Therefore, it is in our best interest to listen so as not to be found wanting. The Responsorial Psalm is a reminder of the provisions that the Lord has made for us to enjoy the beauties…

Time for Refreshing

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

It’s Advent again!  It’s that season of expectation when we prepare the way for the nativity of our Lord. It isa time for the renewal of faith and hope while watching and praying.But why do we have to go through the same rituals every year? Why Advent? It is certainly not for a lack of imagination or creativity on the part of the Church. Rather, it is a perennial reminder of the three comings of Christ our Lord. The first was in history (2000 years ago); the second is his ongoing coming in mystery through his grace, Word and sacraments;…

Bringing Christ into Your Lent

Christ was poor so that we might be rich. Christ’s poverty enriches and makes us more like him. Pope Francis this Lenten season taps into this scripture message. However, we all know that if poverty were a choice, not many would want to experience it even for a day, especially here in Nigeria where wealth is worshipped and adored. Yet, the Pope has chosen to make poverty the theme of this year’s Lenten season. Pope Francis draws our attention to poverty, particularly Christ’s poverty, and what it should mean to us as Christians. The Pontiff explains that Jesus “became poor,…

Extending Christmas to all

Christians all over the world this season celebrate Christmas, the birth of Jesus Christ, Saviour of mankind.  They are commemorating that epochal event which took place in Bethlehem of Judea, some 2013 years ago, which was foretold by Old Testament prophets Isaiah. Christ’s birth was preceded by several millennia of expectations of the Redeemer, promised fallen man by God.   As is usually the case when a new baby is born, Christ’s arrival brought into the world a certain feeling of newness, freshness and joy.  The prophet had foretold that the messiah will be called Emmanuel, meaning God is with…