The Catholic Church frowned on Tuesday at the proliferation of private prayer ministries within the mother church and warned its priests not to do so for unity of purpose.
The Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Bishop Alfred Adewale-Martins, sounded the warning in Lagos.
He made known the Church’s position on private houses of prayer outside the church at the inauguration of the 33rd Annual General Assembly of the Association of Catholic Diocesan Priests of Nigeria.
â’The proliferation of prayer ministries in the Church is wrong and should be checked for unity of purpose. The Church has ways of worshiping and praying that are different from the ways of private prayer ministries.
âMany of these houses of prayer keep their attendants on their toes with the intention of exploiting them and in most cases their needs are not met through prayer.
âIf you want to be a celebrity, you have nothing to do with the priesthood; Rather, channel your capacity for prayer in the Church and make the most of it in the Church rather than creating a variation of Church prayer, âhe accused.
Adewale-Martins noted that there was no other ministry to follow and worship other than that of Jesus Christ as represented by the mother church.
He also noted that prayer ministries, especially when occupied by a priest, were a distraction for the flock and for the Church and should be discouraged.
The Nigeria News Agency (NAN) reports that the two-day session is a gathering of priests across the country to deliberate on pressing national issues.
Its theme is âThe Fundamental and Holistic Reorientation of the Nigerian Person, an Urgent Imperative for Church and Stateâ.
Adewale-Martins also described prayer ministries as separatist spirits that did not mean well for the Church and for society.
He asked the guilty priests not to stray into development as it did not honor their position in society as representatives of God on earth.
Adewale-Martins instructed the preachers of the gospel to use their calling for the good of society and for the glory of God and to await God’s reward.