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Kaduna killings: Onaiyekan faults CAN over call for prayers

The Catholic ArchBishop of Abuja Diocese, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, has faulted the one-day national prayer directed by the Christian Association of Nigeria in honour of victims of the massacre in Southern Kaduna, saying Catholics do not take orders and instructions from CAN.

He questioned the rationale behind such orders by CAN and how they arrived at the decision, “because I don’t believe in praying on a particular day. I will say, pray that God will deliver us from this, not particularly on January 8, 2017.”

The General Secretary of CAN, Dr. Musa Asake, had declared Sunday, January 8, 2017, as “national day of mourning” for all Christians at home and in the Diaspora, and that Christians should dress in mourning attire; black clothes or dresses, on the said date to pray fervently for victims of the killings in Southern Kaduna.

But speaking in Abuja, Onaiyekan said whoever gave that instruction should have known that there is a limit to how they could issue orders to Christians using the name of CAN.

He said, “I do not know what to say about the present leadership of CAN because our (Catholic) church is not fully involved now in CAN. We were not even party to the election that brought in the new leadership of CAN. So, the only position that I can take now is to sit down and watch.

“I cannot tell all my members to come to church next Sunday in black dresses. We don’t get instructions from CAN; every church has its own rules.”

Punch, January 7, 2017

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