(BY NGOZI ADIGHIBE)
The Rt. Rev. Praises Omole, Rector of St. Francis of Assisi Theological College, Wusasa, Zaria in Kaduna state has described a stone as an integral part of creation, and a custodian of history. This, according to him, is because stones have been there even before the world was created and it was also used to create the earth. He gave this description at the monthly power night vigil of the Abuja Anglican Diocese held at St. Mathews Church, Gwarimpa. Speaking on the theme for the month of August, ‘Ebenezer,’ Bishop Omole said that Samuel used the stone, he called Ebenezer as a symbol of covenant between himself and God. He explained that Samuel recognized the importance of a stone and therefore, he carried it not just as an ordinary stone, but as a sign.
According to the guest preacher, in the Old Testament, covenants were made with the use of stones and altars were built with stones. He also pointed out from the Bible, the reference to Jesus as the stone that the builders rejected. Bishop Omole stated that the Church believes in the use of symbols, such as the cross, liturgical colours, oil and so on; therefore, Samuel’s use of a stone can be likened to the Anglican Church’s use of colours to represent certain seasons in the Church calender. He said Samuel used the stone, he named Ebenezer as a reminder that God is his helper; adding that Samuel did not need a stone, but he needed a sign and so, he used a stone as a representation.
Speaking on the month of September, the Bishop said that it is a month of judgement against the wicked. Hence, he prayed and declared that every gathering that is not of the Lord will scatter in this month. He buttressed his message with songs, prayers and prophetic declarations and concluded his session with an altar call for those who desired to accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour and those who want to renew their relationship with God. He declared that the God who has kept all alive and in health despite the precarious situation in the country will help His people in these ember months and for the rest of their lives.