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Aug 14, 2017


Graduands of the Institute for Formation, Idu, in Jos Ecclesiastical Province, have been called upon to bear fruits that will last long and bring glory to God by using their training to serve the Church and humanity working within the confines of the guidelines of the teachings and doctrine of the Church.

The call was made by the Catholic Bishop of Osogbo Diocese, Most Rev. John Oyejola in his homily at the celebration of the Mass to mark the graduation of some students of the institution, recently. According to the bishop, the institution has the dual role of training formators and helping to shape the life of students who have some spiritual and psychological challenges.

His words: “I am aware that not all the candidates sent to the Institute are selected to be trained for the task of formation in the Church. A few are probably on the programme for personal development and improvement of personality traits. There are psychological factors in priests’ ministry and vocation to religious life that may require adjustment in the course of living the vocations to the priesthood and religious life. Some of these include: neurosis, neurotic breakdown, personality inadequacies, immaturities, warped psychosexual development, and addiction to something, infantile deprivations, behavioural disorders, psychosomatic disturbances, suicidal anxieties, intolerable depression, obsessional thinking and compulsive thoughts.”

He added: “Any of these or a combination of some of the factors can lead to a candidate being sent to the Institute for help and reformation by the competent ecclesiastical authority. Such decision should be accepted in good faith, with the understanding that the one who asked you to be part of the programme has good intention.

The bishops used the reading of the Mass to articulate his remarks and urged the students of the institution to accept the will of God in their lives; and make the best use of the opportunities offered them by their formators at the institution to help enhance their spiritual and pastoral lives.

While urging students who are in the second category  not to be disillusioned, Bishop Oyejola called on the graduands to keep their minds open to God, as they return to their pastoral duties. He said: “If some concerns informed your participation in this programme, courage and the grace of God is enough for you after this programme at Du. Remember the Spirit of the Institute, solemn, prayerful, simple and its compelling calmness. Let all these be part of you beyond the four walls of the Institute. Nurture the training you have received, protect what you have acquired and put it to practice.”

He added: “God has a plan for each of you, a plan for you to be productive, creative, caring, loving and showing the light of Christ in the world. In the next couple of years God will show you continually where he needs you. He may lead you to the work of formation as Novice mistress and master, seminary formator or even parish ministry.

The bishop added: “Whatever the path God chooses for you, do your best with a confidence that is deepened by self-knowledge and humility, knowing who you are; with a sense of commitment to the mission of Christ energized by competence and excellence; with a love for the people of God leading to joyful friendships that last a life time; with special intimate connection with your God, such that prayer and worship become your ultimate source of power and strength.”

While pointing out that the graduation ceremony is a testimony of the achievement of the formators as educators, counselors and mentors of adult participants, Bishop Oyejola warned:

 “ It is pertinent to point out that the Nigerian society outside of the Institute has not changed from its terrible, dark, confusing, deceiving, brutal and corrupt nature. But you participants of the programme at Du have been formed to recognise that the same society is suffused and embraced in the light of Christ, with joy, possibilities for doing good, for redemption with the hope of salvation if only each one of you can contribute his/her quota to make it so.”

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