UMUAHIA, NIGERIA -
Provincial Coordinators of Justice Development and Peace/Caritas Nigeria (JDPC) in the country have been called upon to initiate programmes and activities that will enhance the poverty alleviation programmes of the Church. This admonition was given by the Bishop of Umuahia Diocese and Episcopal Chairman of JDPC/Caritas Nigeria, Most Rev. Lucius Ugorji while addressing the meeting of the coordinators at the Kolping Society of Nigeria Guest House in Umuahia on Tuesday, July 17, 2012.
Noting that there is the need for the social service work of the country to be more proactive and ensure meaningful fight against poverty, Bishop Ugorji told the coordinators that JDP/Caritas Nigeria workers throughout the country need to come up with more meaningful programmes and activities that will impact more positively on the life of majority of Nigerians.
Expressing concern on the high rate of poverty in the country, the bishop chairman urged the coordinators to mobilize their diocesan coordinators and other workers of the commission for the challenges of the issue of poverty in the country stressing that “poverty is too much in the country and we must find a way out.” He urged to study and emulate the programmes of some African and Asian countries who have successfully combated poverty through society and people motivated programmes.”
The bishop chairman continued: “The Church cannot close her eyes to the poor because it is her social responsibility. She must be compassionate as exemplified by Christ.”
Bishop Ugorji also called on the JDPC helmsmen that they also have a duty to mobilize and educate the faithful about the tenets of the common good noting that this fact is emphasized by the social teachings of the Church. He said: “Catholic Social Teachings emphasize the change of the inner mind, hence the need for all the faithful to be acquainted with them.”
He added: “JDPC must spearhead and educate the faithful about Common Good, subsidiarity, solidarity and collaboration,” stressing: “Transformation of the society begins with the transformation of the individual.” He noted that the crises in the country, particularly the Boko Haram insurgence has many other dimensions apart from the religious aspect, pointing out that these include socio-economic problems, political problems and need for good governance.
He called on JDP/Caritas officers to collaborate with the Catholic Caritas Foundation of Nigeria (CCFN) the other organ of the Bishops Conference responsible for the promotion of social justice in the country, to ensure the materialization of the bishops’ efforts in this perspective for the benefit of humanity and to the greater glory of God.