“We thank the Lord at how far we have come; we can now go about in our church activity and God has taken control,” said Rev. Emmanuel Josiah Udofia, who cited Psalm 124: “If it had not been the Lord who was on our side, now may Israel say.”
The purpose of the meeting was to share challenges and successes faced before and after COVID-19. “As churches, we are now gathering to share our successes and challenges by learning from one another, encouraging one another, sharing ideas, and strengthening our relationships. Meetings of this nature help bring unity among churches,” participants said.
“We had to adapt to new ways of handling church services during the pandemic,” said Deacon Adebayo Anthony Kehinde, ecumenical officer. “During the pandemic, the church had to respond to its members’ spiritual needs, so we had to adapt to the online services even in the rural areas. Our mass services are now back to normal, but we are still happy to offer online services.”
“African-instituted churches were divided in two in 2019 but now the church is united by the grace of God,” said Josiah. “The church is stronger than before and the members are now more involved than they ever were.”
The group communicated a message that they want strong involvement in the work of the WCC, and in the upcoming WCC 11th Assembly.
“We believe the African-instituted churches should be more involved in the work of the council, despite our minority number,” they said. “We trust that we have competent and qualified persons within our churches and they are able to contribute to the work of the council.”
They expressed the wish that, during the assembly, stewards from all over the world would be present.
“Lastly, It is with great appreciation that we thank the leadership of the World Council of Churches for organizing the central committee meeting, as we will be returning home with such a sense of inspiration and appreciation,” they concluded.