OKOGIE: A PROFILE IN DISCIPLESHIP, LESSON TO JET PASTORS – By Bayo Oluwasanmi

20140128-095452 pm.jpg

— For the Archbishop Emeritus of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, His Eminence, Anthony Olubunmi Okogie, it’s not easy taking a stand for what’s right when every Nigerian Jet Pastor around him is running after what’s wrong. It’s not been fun either for Okogie swimming against the current of public opinion or walking against the wind of selfish pursuits.
Standing alone may not be popular especially in a reprobate nation like Nigeria, but it is always profitable for Okogie who chooses to walk with God. Working with people is not so difficult. All you need is unfailing patience, insight, stability, and tremendous experience. And Okogie is abundantly blessed with all the four qualities – and much more.
God could have chosen to do his work another way, but he didn’t. He chose to use people. People like Moses, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and of course Okogie. God asked Moses to demand of Pharaoh, “Let my people go!” And God asked Isaiah and Jeremiah to prophesy to a rebellious nation. Moses said “I won’t.” Isaiah said “Woe is me!” Jeremiah said, “I can’t.” And God asked Okogie to fight for the poor. Okogie said “Here I am God, send me!” Yet God supplied the strength and training to prepare each messenger to deliver his message.
In like manner, when God asked the Jet Pastors to side with poor and oppressed Nigerians and confront the oppressors with truth only the truth, they said “We’ll rather begin our charity abroad in our executive jets than associate with suffering Nigerians.” In unison, they answered, “We can’t,” “We won’t,” and “We will never!”
Though I have never listened to Okogie’s sermon, that’s what he did with his life – in the choices he made, the wisdom demonstrated, the priority that he gave to prayer, and the diligence he demonstrated toward the plight of the poor and voiceless Nigerians. I’m not a Catholic, but Cardinal Okogie’s outspokenness against military dictators and tyrants of a democratic government almost persuaded me to become a Catholic.
Every successive government in Nigeria has received the full brunt of Okogie’s assault. Like a diligent watchman, Okogie guards the Nigerian multitude of poor by warning the “Ogas at the top” of the impending judgement. He calls and calls, but no one is listening.
The career of Okogie, presents the life and ministry of “theology of liberation” as he preaches to his once mighty nation – Nigeria – a withering flower or a passing shadow. For nearly half a century, Okogie proclaims an unpopular message to the politicians as well as the Jet Pastors: do not pray that the poor be fed unless you are willing to provide the bread.
His sermons go unheeded by the headstrong leaders who do their best to silence Okogie by ignoring his cries and counsel. Opposed, hated, and once arrested, the heartbroken priest lives to see the cruel political leaders unleash all forms of barbarity on Nigerians.
Okogie, one of Nigeria’s prophetic mouthpieces – what a privilege and a responsibility – for the 77-year old priest to peer into the troubled waters of 2015 and doles out unpalatable truth to President Goodluck Jonathan not to run in 2015.
In an interview published in The Citizen Online September 22 last year, Okogie focused on 2015 presidential elections. Headlined “Don’t Run, Jonathan, Don’t …” the interview is a deliciously satisfying encounter with the fiery priest. At 77, Okogie remains unbowed and unbought. He dispenses the truth with divine generosity. There is still fire in the belly of the lion.
Excerpts from his interview:
On President Jonathan and 2015: “If I were Jonathan I will not try it because the writing on the wall does not favour it. We have not even got to 2015. There is so much sycophancy and flattery. It is like telling Okogie now to go into politics, ‘come, you are the kind of person we want,’ you think I am stupid.”
“Apart from the story that Jonathan made an agreement that he would do just one term, if it is true, do you think those who were there when he said ‘just one term’ are stupid.”
On corruption: “It is quite true and corruption has been there, but not as strong as it is now. It is now a cankerworm. The only good Lord can help us out of it. But if we want to fight corruption, we should start from the top. The man at the top is thinking when I leave office, what happens to me and he want to build an empire for himself. How did it get it?”
“Why are so many people running into politics? 2015 is two years away; see how they are killing themselves. Who even knows who will get to 2015? What do you think they are looking for, money? Nothing else. They are not patriotic; they are not. All our political leaders, how many of them can beat their chests to say they are patriotic. It is just gimmick and pancake that they are doing.”
On government’s plan for the youth: “They often say the youths are the future leaders of tomorrow; it is not true, because where are the plans they have for the youths; how many of them are truly educating the youths or giving scholarships?”
“Look at the ongoing ASUU strike, then consider the amount of money the senators, president, and governors collect, compared to what others are getting in Europe. And look at our schools, the citadel of learning, where the youths are supposed to be trained for the future of the country, that they claim is for youths.”
“Why are they not sending their own children to those kinds of schools? And those who do not have enough money to take their children to Europe take them to Ghana and even Benin Republic. This is the problem we all have. And this is why corruption is there.”
On the political parties: “The parties are chop, I chop like Fela said; they are all the same. If we are all patriotic, you do not care where the person who rules comes from…” I am looking for job, but I cannot get the job simply because I am from a particular region. What is wrong with us? So, our political leaders should guide and guard their mouths, because some of the people listening to them are stark illiterates, they hear go they do not hear come.”
On unholy alliance between Jet Pastors and oppressors of the ruling class: “It is pity that a good number of those who call themselves religious leaders today are not religious leaders; they only became religious leaders because they want to feed their tummy… And they feel they can take it up, read, and interpret it (Bible) to suit themselves, but no way. And this is why they are not keeping to their calling.”
The iconic figure of the Roman Catholic Mission in Nigeria, Cardinal Anthony Olubunmi Okogie retired from the pastoral governance of the See of Lagos having reached the age limit of 75 years May 25, 2012.
Born June 6, 1936 in Lagos, to a royal family of Uromi in Edo State his father was Esan and his mother was Yoruba. He holds a licentiate in sacred theology and was ordained as a priest December 1, 1966. In 1973, he became the Archbishop of Lagos. From 1994 to 2000, he headed the Bishop’s Conference of Nigeria.
Archbishop Okogie is the ultimate friend and companion of the voiceless, the marginalized, the helpless, and the poor. He’s the people’s priest. In my opinion, Cardinal Okogie possesses one of the most revolting pens in the history of clergy in Nigeria. He’s a thorn on politicians and those of the clergy and other appendages who branded with reprobate scandals. He detests their pomp, their pride, and their luxuriousness.
Over the years, Cardinal Okogie has mystified both his critics and admirers of the courage that sustained his heart, and the peace that filled his soul, were reflected upon his countenance and struck the beholders. He once volunteered to die in place of a Muslim woman who had been condemned to death by stoning by an Islamic court for adultery.
A man of super intellect, he never hide his belief in an infallible Bible and the consequences of that belief in his conforming behavior to Biblical precepts. Okogie is a solid excellent Christian, a rare gem among his fellow clergy men both at home and abroad. A man of great power with great piety. He was one of the few cardinal electors in the 2005 papal conclave that selected Pope Benedict XVI.
With a cheerful countenance and more than stoical constancy, he confronts head on the workers of iniquities that continue to annihilate the very people they sworn to serve and protect.
In June 2005 when the police acting on the orders of the federal government, laid siege on 1004 Estate, Victoria Island, Lagos; Bishop Okogie condemned the action saying “If a soul is lost there (1004 Estate), I will not hesitate to call for civil disobedience and beckon the international community against this government.”
The estate has been a subject of dispute between the federal government who had one time sold the property to the highest bidder and consequently asked its occupants who are mostly civil servants to vacate the building.
Like other helpless Nigerians, the Bishop felt like a prisoner in an outworn, obsolete political and theological system. Worried that religious politics would tear Nigeria apart, the revered Bishop warned that no country could remain one when “adherents of a particular religion are being singled out for persecution and denial of their fundamental rights as citizens of this country.”
Addressing newly ordained priests August 2005, the Cardinal said many priests had failed in their responsibility because of their inability to match their belief with actions. In 2006 speaking on the spate of assassinations in the country, the eminent Bishop had this to say: “The assassination of the former justice minister Bola Ige, Dikibo Marshall, Funso Williams and now Ayo Daramola portends a very great danger for our country, because the killers have not been found and prosecuted to deter others…”
On safety and security, he warned that “A nation without security is not a nation… Such a nation slides gradually into jungle justice, barbarism, anarchy and chaos.” “I am no prophet,” continued the Cardinal, “but if care is not taken, the way we are going, there will be many more assassinations before the 2007 elections.” Events that followed however, proved him to be a prophet!
A champion of public education, Cardinal Okogie berated the federal government when seven private universities were approved. He accused government of promoting private education at the expense of public education. “They are (government) subtly killing education in this country and making same costly for parents,” said the Cardinal.
Never recoiled from torments of enemies of progress and accusers of the brethren, Cardinal Okogie never missed the opportunity to condemn the extravagant riches of secular and church office. In June 2007 in Abuja at the Ordination of Seven Missionaries of Society of St. Paul (MSP), the Bishop took a swipe at priests who enriched themselves in God’s name. With biting sarcasm he lashed out at their hypocrisy:
“We need good Priests to carry out the work of God and lead Nigerians to Christ,” he said. “Now you see men of God involving themselves in negative attitude, bad practices such as enriching themselves with material things under the pretence of working in the Lord’s vineyard. Priests of God should bear good fruits that last,” he warned.
He challenged Nigerians to hold their priests accountable. “You must correct the man of God when they are not getting it right. They’re not saints, they are humans… Do not hesitate to call them back when they go astray.”
Okogie, “Dare to be a Daniel” is more than an old gospel song. It is a timeless challenge for the ruling class, the Jet Pastors, and for each new generation of Nigerians, calling them to be God’s “change agents” wherever he might send them or whatever position he might plant them. Okogie’s confidence in God is nurtured by his communication with God. To Okogie, to trust God is to talk to God, and to talk to God is to trust him all the more.
No doubt, Cardinal Okogie has left a sting in the hearts and a gnawing worm in the consciences of the enemies of the people. The lesson from the Cardinal’s life to the Jet Pastors is clear: A godly life is the best advertisement for Christianity.
We wish the people’s priest a retirement full of happiness and fun.

byolu@aol.com

51 Comments

  1. After I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a remark is added I get four emails with the identical comment. Is there any manner you’ll be able to remove me from that service? Thanks!

  2. A lot of thanks for all of the labor on this website. My mom really loves conducting research and it’s really easy to understand why. All of us notice all of the powerful medium you provide powerful strategies via your blog and even increase response from other individuals on this area of interest while my child is in fact becoming educated a whole lot. Take pleasure in the remaining portion of the new year. You have been doing a first class job.

  3. I intended to put you that very little note just to say thanks once again considering the splendid information you have provided at this time. It’s so strangely open-handed of you giving unreservedly all a number of us would have marketed for an e-book in making some profit for themselves, notably considering that you might well have done it in case you decided. Those pointers also acted to become easy way to recognize that the rest have the identical passion really like my personal own to see more and more regarding this condition. I’m certain there are millions of more pleasurable situations in the future for people who scan through your blog.

  4. I actually wanted to compose a small word to express gratitude to you for all the unique steps you are writing on this website. My time consuming internet lookup has now been rewarded with sensible facts to go over with my contacts. I ‘d tell you that we visitors are really lucky to dwell in a good website with many perfect people with very helpful ideas. I feel somewhat fortunate to have come across your site and look forward to so many more pleasurable times reading here. Thanks again for everything.

  5. I intended to create you a very little word so as to thank you very much over again for the pleasant guidelines you’ve discussed on this site. This has been so remarkably open-handed with people like you to offer without restraint precisely what most of us could possibly have offered for sale for an e book to generate some money for themselves, particularly considering that you could possibly have tried it if you desired. Those secrets in addition worked to become a great way to comprehend other people online have the identical zeal just as my own to know great deal more on the topic of this matter. I know there are lots of more pleasant times ahead for many who looked at your blog.

  6. Thanks a lot for giving everyone such a marvellous opportunity to read in detail from this site. It’s usually so superb and packed with a lot of fun for me personally and my office mates to visit your website at least three times in 7 days to study the latest issues you will have. Of course, we are actually fascinated with your very good advice served by you. Certain 3 facts in this post are really the simplest we have ever had.

  7. I not to mention my guys were found to be viewing the excellent items located on your site then then got an awful suspicion I had not thanked the web blog owner for those tips. All of the young men became totally stimulated to learn all of them and already have actually been using those things. We appreciate you actually being really kind and for making a choice on varieties of incredible ideas most people are really desperate to be aware of. Our honest apologies for not saying thanks to you sooner.

  8. My wife and i have been absolutely thrilled when Albert could finish off his survey from your ideas he gained out of the web page. It’s not at all simplistic just to be handing out techniques that other folks have been making money from. Therefore we remember we now have you to thank because of that. The most important illustrations you have made, the simple blog navigation, the relationships you help to create – it’s all exceptional, and it’s helping our son in addition to us feel that that subject matter is fun, which is certainly seriously essential. Many thanks for all the pieces!

  9. My spouse and i felt very fulfilled when Peter could complete his studies using the precious recommendations he discovered from your web page. It’s not at all simplistic just to happen to be offering secrets other folks might have been making money from. We really realize we have got you to be grateful to for that. The main illustrations you’ve made, the easy web site menu, the relationships you can make it possible to instill – it’s mostly powerful, and it is making our son and our family reason why this topic is fun, which is certainly exceedingly mandatory. Thanks for all the pieces!

  10. Once I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a comment is added I get 4 emails with the identical comment. Is there any method you can remove me from that service? Thanks!

  11. I intended to put you this bit of remark just to thank you very much again for your personal precious tactics you’ve contributed on this page. This has been really generous with you to grant without restraint all a number of us would have made available as an electronic book in order to make some money on their own, principally now that you could possibly have done it if you wanted. Those tactics also acted to become a fantastic way to fully grasp other individuals have similar dream just as mine to realize whole lot more with regard to this condition. I’m sure there are many more fun moments up front for people who check out your blog.

  12. There are some attention-grabbing points in time on this article but I don抰 know if I see all of them heart to heart. There may be some validity however I’ll take hold opinion till I look into it further. Good article , thanks and we wish extra! Added to FeedBurner as effectively

  13. I must express some thanks to this writer for rescuing me from this type of predicament. Right after surfing throughout the the net and finding basics that were not helpful, I believed my life was gone. Existing without the approaches to the problems you have fixed as a result of this article content is a crucial case, and the ones which might have adversely damaged my career if I had not discovered your blog. Your training and kindness in maneuvering everything was invaluable. I don’t know what I would’ve done if I hadn’t come upon such a thing like this. I can at this point look ahead to my future. Thanks for your time so much for your specialized and results-oriented help. I will not think twice to suggest the sites to anybody who would need support on this situation.

  14. There are certainly a lot of details like that to take into consideration. That may be a great point to convey up. I provide the ideas above as common inspiration however clearly there are questions just like the one you carry up where crucial thing might be working in honest good faith. I don?t know if best practices have emerged around things like that, however I am sure that your job is clearly recognized as a fair game. Each boys and girls feel the impact of only a second抯 pleasure, for the rest of their lives.

  15. I not to mention my friends were found to be looking at the great advice located on your web blog and so then got an awful feeling I had not thanked the website owner for those techniques. The women are already certainly joyful to learn all of them and have undoubtedly been using them. Thanks for truly being really considerate as well as for opting for such good issues most people are really eager to know about. Our own honest regret for not expressing gratitude to sooner.

  16. Aw, this was a very nice post. In idea I would like to put in writing like this moreover ?taking time and actual effort to make a very good article?but what can I say?I procrastinate alot and not at all seem to get something done.

  17. I would like to show some appreciation to this writer just for rescuing me from this particular trouble. Because of exploring through the the net and obtaining proposals which are not beneficial, I was thinking my life was done. Existing without the presence of solutions to the issues you’ve fixed all through your guide is a serious case, as well as the ones which may have in a negative way damaged my career if I hadn’t discovered your blog. Your primary ability and kindness in taking care of all things was precious. I’m not sure what I would have done if I had not discovered such a step like this. I can at this moment look forward to my future. Thanks very much for this skilled and results-oriented help. I will not be reluctant to recommend your web sites to any individual who ought to have support on this subject.

  18. Thanks for all your hard work on this site. Ellie really loves participating in investigations and it’s obvious why. Most of us learn all about the powerful mode you offer very important thoughts through your web blog and as well improve response from others on this area while my simple princess is certainly understanding a lot. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. You’re performing a tremendous job.

  19. I discovered your weblog site on google and verify a few of your early posts. Proceed to maintain up the excellent operate. I just additional up your RSS feed to my MSN News Reader. Seeking ahead to reading more from you later on!?

  20. Spot on with this write-up, I truly suppose this website needs far more consideration. I抣l in all probability be again to learn far more, thanks for that info.

  21. An interesting dialogue is price comment. I think that you should write extra on this matter, it may not be a taboo subject but usually individuals are not enough to talk on such topics. To the next. Cheers

  22. Thanks a lot for giving everyone an extremely superb opportunity to check tips from here. It is often very kind and also jam-packed with amusement for me personally and my office mates to visit your site at the very least thrice in a week to study the newest items you have. And of course, I’m so certainly impressed for the very good advice you serve. Selected two ideas in this post are rather the most effective we have had.

  23. An attention-grabbing discussion is price comment. I feel that it is best to write more on this matter, it might not be a taboo topic however typically people are not sufficient to talk on such topics. To the next. Cheers

  24. I enjoy you because of your whole efforts on this site. My mother take interest in making time for research and it’s simple to grasp why. Most people notice all relating to the powerful means you deliver precious tips and hints via your web site and as well recommend response from the others on this matter while our favorite simple princess has been understanding a lot of things. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. You’re doing a very good job.

  25. Oh my goodness! a tremendous article dude. Thanks However I’m experiencing problem with ur rss . Don抰 know why Unable to subscribe to it. Is there anyone getting identical rss drawback? Anybody who is aware of kindly respond. Thnkx

  26. I must show my respect for your kind-heartedness for those individuals that should have assistance with this area of interest. Your special dedication to passing the solution along ended up being pretty good and has without exception enabled employees much like me to realize their endeavors. Your amazing important guide entails a whole lot to me and a whole lot more to my office colleagues. Thank you; from everyone of us.

  27. My spouse and i got absolutely fortunate when Peter managed to deal with his preliminary research from the precious recommendations he obtained from your own blog. It’s not at all simplistic to simply possibly be releasing thoughts that most people might have been trying to sell. So we realize we’ve got you to appreciate for this. All the illustrations you’ve made, the easy blog navigation, the relationships you will help foster – it is mostly wonderful, and it’s leading our son in addition to our family reason why that article is awesome, which is certainly seriously serious. Many thanks for all the pieces!

  28. That is the right blog for anyone who wants to seek out out about this topic. You understand a lot its almost arduous to argue with you (not that I really would need匟aHa). You definitely put a new spin on a subject thats been written about for years. Great stuff, simply great!

  29. I precisely had to thank you very much again. I’m not certain what I would have gone through without the entire tricks contributed by you about such a industry. It actually was a real frustrating case in my circumstances, but seeing this professional approach you processed the issue made me to cry with delight. I’m grateful for your support as well as have high hopes you realize what a powerful job your are undertaking teaching people via your web site. Probably you haven’t encountered any of us.

  30. Thank you so much for giving everyone an extremely wonderful chance to check tips from this site. It can be so terrific plus full of a good time for me personally and my office fellow workers to search the blog particularly thrice per week to find out the fresh guidance you have. And indeed, I am also always contented for the unique guidelines you give. Some 4 facts in this posting are unequivocally the most beneficial we’ve ever had.

  31. When I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a remark is added I get 4 emails with the same comment. Is there any means you possibly can take away me from that service? Thanks!

  32. I have to get across my respect for your generosity for folks who have the need for assistance with that subject. Your very own commitment to getting the message all around appeared to be wonderfully beneficial and has really enabled girls like me to get to their endeavors. Your entire important guideline can mean much a person like me and still more to my peers. Many thanks; from all of us.

  33. Oh my goodness! a tremendous article dude. Thank you Nevertheless I’m experiencing challenge with ur rss . Don抰 know why Unable to subscribe to it. Is there anybody getting identical rss downside? Anybody who is aware of kindly respond. Thnkx

  34. I want to express thanks to you just for bailing me out of this particular situation. After researching through the search engines and finding basics which were not beneficial, I figured my life was gone. Living without the presence of strategies to the issues you’ve fixed all through the write-up is a critical case, and the ones that might have negatively affected my career if I hadn’t encountered your blog post. Your mastery and kindness in controlling every part was very helpful. I am not sure what I would have done if I hadn’t come across such a point like this. It’s possible to at this time relish my future. Thank you so much for the impressive and results-oriented guide. I won’t be reluctant to recommend your web sites to any person who should get assistance about this subject.

  35. I抦 impressed, I must say. Really not often do I encounter a weblog that抯 both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you’ve gotten hit the nail on the head. Your concept is excellent; the issue is something that not enough individuals are talking intelligently about. I’m very blissful that I stumbled throughout this in my seek for something regarding this.

  36. I as well as my pals were actually examining the best helpful hints on your site and so immediately I had an awful feeling I never expressed respect to the web site owner for those tips. All the young boys appeared to be certainly stimulated to read through them and have now in reality been tapping into them. I appreciate you for getting indeed kind as well as for choosing these kinds of tremendous subject areas most people are really needing to understand about. Our sincere regret for not expressing gratitude to you sooner.

  37. Needed to compose you this very small note so as to thank you so much again on the wonderful opinions you have shown in this article. This is simply pretty open-handed of people like you in giving openly exactly what numerous people might have made available as an e-book to help with making some bucks on their own, certainly since you could have tried it in case you wanted. These pointers likewise worked like a great way to fully grasp most people have the same passion much like my personal own to figure out lots more with reference to this matter. I’m certain there are lots of more enjoyable situations ahead for people who examine your blog post.

  38. Good post. I be taught one thing more difficult on completely different blogs everyday. It’s going to all the time be stimulating to read content material from different writers and apply a little one thing from their store. I抎 desire to make use of some with the content material on my weblog whether you don抰 mind. Natually I抣l offer you a hyperlink in your web blog. Thanks for sharing.

  39. I precisely wished to appreciate you all over again. I do not know what I would have worked on in the absence of these techniques provided by you about this area of interest. It was the depressing case for me, but noticing a expert approach you solved it made me to leap for delight. I will be happy for this information and as well , hope that you comprehend what a powerful job your are getting into instructing people today thru your blog. I’m certain you’ve never got to know any of us.

  40. I was more than happy to find this net-site.I wanted to thanks to your time for this excellent read!! I undoubtedly enjoying each little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to take a look at new stuff you weblog post.

  41. Thank you a lot for providing individuals with a very wonderful opportunity to check tips from this website. It is often very pleasant and full of a good time for me and my office co-workers to visit your blog really thrice per week to see the newest secrets you have. And of course, I’m also actually happy for the remarkable tactics you serve. Certain 4 ideas in this posting are definitely the most effective I have ever had.

  42. I simply needed to appreciate you all over again. I do not know what I would’ve followed in the absence of those tips and hints discussed by you regarding that question. It became a frightening concern for me personally, but finding out the very well-written mode you handled it made me to weep over happiness. Now i am grateful for this help and as well , hope you are aware of an amazing job you are doing instructing men and women by way of a site. I know that you have never met any of us.

  43. Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive learn anything like this before. So good to search out somebody with some original ideas on this subject. realy thanks for beginning this up. this web site is one thing that is needed on the net, someone with somewhat originality. helpful job for bringing something new to the internet!

  44. What a story of a man disciplined and touched by God. A true servant of the Most High, my kind of a man called of God, after God’s heart and that of His people. Such a man is what the kingdom of God seeks, a fearless and bold man who stands up for righteousness and ought to be desired. But a lost generation is easily ensnared by the pageantry. Sadly in my country of birth called Nigeria, there are so many wolfs in sheep clothing that are nothing but corrupt and evil hearted men and women, deceivers of the faithful. God will judge each, both hear on earth and beyond.
    May God bless you always, cardinal Okogie.

12 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. Hay Day Cheats
  2. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City cheats
  3. Trackback
  4. Trackback
  5. Trackback
  6. Trackback
  7. Trackback
  8. Trackback
  9. Trackback
  10. Trackback
  11. Trackback
  12. Trackback

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.