SUNDAY, MAY 25, 2014.
METHODIST CHURCH NIGERIA HOLDS RETREAT IN IBRU CENTRE
REV. CANON GABRIEL KPAGBAN
The Methodist Church Nigeria, Archdiocese of Enugu held her ministers and deaconesses retreat at the Ibru International Ecumenical Retreat Centre, Agbarha – Otor, Delta. The retreat which started on Wednesday 14th of April and ended on Saturday, 17th, 2014 had over 190 delegates in attendance, including their Bishops. The theme of the retreat is ‘the Methodist minister in the 21st century A.D.’
In an address presented at the retreat, the Archbishop of the Archdiocese, Most Rev. Barr. Christopher N. Ede said that the theme was appropriate since the’ Church is ministering in a changing world and needs to continue to update herself to meet the changing society which she is serving’.
Furthermore, he averred that the Church workers need continuous self development to be able to cope with a dynamic Church. He said the reason for the choice of the centre was such that they could be in an environment that would enhance maximum concentration. Drawing from his awareness that the facility was a donation to the Anglican Church, the Church father challenged his flocks to emulate the kind gesture of Dr Alex Ibru of blessed memory who donated such a wonderful Centre for the use of all Christians.
In his remark, Very Rev. B. N. Eze, the Archdiocesan Director of Evangelism and the Coordinator of the retreat, observed that the retreat was wonderful, impactful and indeed a time of spiritual renewal for the ministers and deaconesses in Enugu Archdiocese.
As a strategy, the Church is embarking upon a repositioning programme to re-awake and rekindle the spiritual flame and give adequate focus on evangelism, soul winning and scriptural holiness. This commitment is in line with the vision statement of Methodist Church Nigeria ‘to be the largest and spiritually vibrant Church’ and a mission ‘to consistently win more souls for Christ, develop spiritually fulfilled members and remain very active in serving humanity’.
Other Bishops who were present at the retreat are; Rt. Rev. G. A. Agupusi MFR, Bishop of the Diocese of Abakaliki, he spoke on ‘leadership and integrity.’ Rt. Rev. Sunday Eze, Bishop of the Diocese of Onitsha; he did the exposition on the theme of the retreat. Rt. Rev. B. L. Onuagha, Bishop of Agbani Diocese who gave the lecture on ‘human relationship in the ministry’ as well as John Okorie of the Diocese of Ngbo who lectured on the topic ‘the minister and his/her family’.
In addition, the retreat featured Bible studies based on the theme, prayer ministrations, as well as physical exercises and other sporting activities. The convocation ended on Saturday with a closing remark and prayer offered by the Archbishop. It was a time well spent with the Lord as members were spiritually reinvigorated and empowered. The serenity of the facility aided in no small measure in accomplishing the goals of the Archdiocese as ministers returned home with new sense of commitment to the work of God.