Nigerians were on Monday called upon to shun every form of divisiveness in religious practice in order to allow the country to attain her potentials in every facet of humanity.
The call was made by Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Lekan Balogun, and the governor of Oyo State, Engr. Seyi Makinde at the Easter Picnic organized by the Palace Chaplain, Rev. Olusoji Adediji at the Alarere residence of the monarch.
Oba Balogun in his brief remark rejoiced with the Christians’ community over the celebration of this year’s Easter festivity and said the mere coincidence of the two major religious’ annual fasting period was an important lesson on the oneness of religions and God, who created heaven and Earth.
According to him, “there’s need for all adherents of different faiths to live and work harmoniously towards the growth, progress and development of our country. It is incontrovertible that our God is only one not minding whatever names we call Him, so, why do we have to fight one another because of Him if we are genuine and sincere in our professing of Him”?
Speaking in the same vein, governor Makinde, who was represented by his Special Assistant on Inter-Faith Affairs, Pastor, Zacheaus Olufemi Ibikunle said “it is through our love for one another, irrespective of our mode of worship that we can truly enjoy the love of the main servants of God.
“For the first time in the history of Oyo State, the office of Inter-Faith was created by Governor Seyi Makinde and I became the pioneer officer in charge to demonstrate the open-mindedness of the governor on religious matters. By the grace of Almighty God, I can say it without fear of contradiction that there cannot be religious crisis in the state.
“The present administration in the state is passionately committed to its growth, progress and development in every facet of human endeavour as can be attested to in the various projects being executed across the nooks and crannies of the state and could not be bogged down by religious acrimony”, he added.
In the short sermon delivered by Rev. Amos Adediran, he dwelled on the single text read from the book of John15:12-22 and disclosed that it was the loss of love that led to the myriad of problems confronting the country, charging all the leaders in all areas of life to embrace love as the only antidote to the problems being encountered as a nation.
The clergyman said, ”the Easter celebration being held is a demonstration of the greatest love of God for mankind and it is a charge to us all, irrespective of religion which is only mode of worship to share that virtue of unconditional love for one another for a peaceful, prosperous and progressive society”.
Organizer of the programme and the Palace Chaplain, Rev. Adediji said the programme was to rejoice with Kabiyesi being his first Easter celebration on the throne and pray for him for long life, sound health and wisdom as well as understanding with which to direct the Ibadan affairs.