Congregants Cry Out As Priest Extorts Church Members

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Unless the Bishop of Owerri Anglican Diocese, Rt. Rev. Chukwuna Opara intervenes, many Candidates currently being prepared for CONFIRMATION for the Holy Sacrament in a church (name withheld) in the Diocese may drop due to what parents of the children describe as extortion.

A 70year old widow who said she had been in high spirit since the preparation classes for confirmation candidates started in the Church lamented that her morale went low when one evening her two children came back home to reel out the demands of the Priest In charge as the June 12th, 2022, date for the Confirmation proper draws near.

She said she was not bothered with the compound cleaning exercises the children had been subjected to but the rip off.

The old widow, who spoke on condition of anonymity, revealed that the Priests In charge had asked every Confirmation candidate to pay a levy of five thousand naira each in addition to bringing a bottle of fried groundnut, one big yam and four eggs.

She posited she will also buy white trousers, white shirts, shoes and igbo hymn books for the two children. Asked to quantify the items, she said ” am looking at twenty- five thousand naira and how do I make it, in this my condition”.

Another parent, who spoke on condition of anonymity, condemned the Priest’s high-handedness and wondered if such attitude conformed with the biblical injunctions in the Gospel of St Mark chapter ten, verse thirteen to fifteen.

He lamented that the Priest’s style of shepherding his flocks was driving away some members of the Church who now find solace in Pentecostal churches around.

Others who spoke appealed to the Bishop to come to their rescue as it is their desire to rear their children in the fear of God.

They wondered what will befall their children if they can’t meet this demand come twelfth June, 2022.