Workers of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), have been admonished to listen to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, in order to serve the Church and humanity better; in the context of the mission of Christ on earth.
This advice was given by the Bishop of Bauchi Diocese, Most Rev. Hilary Dachelem CMF, in his homily at the celebration of the Mass for this year’s Annual Retreat for all the staff of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria (CSN), and other agencies of the CBCN, held at the Durumi, head office of the CSN, Abuja, recently.
Using the readings of the Mass to buttress his point, Bishop Dachelem noted that the first reading and the Gospel of Luke which described that Christ opened a particular place in the Book which read: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, He has anointed me to preach the Good News to the poor, free the captives and heal the sick;” clearly signified the mission statement of Christ on earth.
Noting that Christ has by the statement showed us what he has come to do on earth, Bishop Dachelem added that our mission, especially in the discharge of our duties as workers of the Bishops’ Conference, must be inspired by the Holy Spirit for the common good. He, however, expressed concern that from time to time, we are inspired by the Spirit, but our responses have not been encouraging.
He, therefore, urged the participants at the retreat to re-examine themselves, as to why they are here and what they have come to achieve in life. He added: “Christ is talking to us and we must listen to him, especially in the discharge of our duties.”
According to the local ordinary of Bauchi Diocese; something that most of us take for granted is that the spirit lives in us. This spirit does not go on holidays, so we have to be inspired by the Holy Spirit, but the question is how do we get inspired? How do we come to realize what the Lord wants from us? He continued: Go silently to His presence and listen to His word; then we will have the Holy Spirit inspiring us and whispering to us”
He urged the workers to always seek the face of God in whatever they do, saying: “So, as we commence our work, this year, my prayer for you is that you should find time to listen to God so that you will be guided by the Holy Spirit to do what the Lord wants this year.”
The retreat facilitator who declared the 2021 Work Year open on behalf of the President of the CBCN and other members of the Conference also used the occasion to commend the staff of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria and other agencies of the CBCN for their sacrifices, dedication and commitment in coordinating the activities of the Church in Nigeria, in spite of challenges.
He said: “I want to thank the President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria, His Grace, Most Rev. Augustine Akubeze, who is the Chief overseer and also the Secretary-General of the Catholic Secretariat, Very Rev. Fr. Zachariah Samjumi and in a special way, the Rev. Fr. Directors of different departments and agencies. I thank the staff for coordinating activities of the Church in Nigeria. You sacrifice a lot but we want to count on your understanding.”