By Polycarp Ifeanyi
The Catholic Men Organisation (CMO) of St Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, New Haven, Ogbaru LGA, Anambra State, in preparation for the 2023 Fathering Sunday has held a couples forum.
The one-week event tagged “From the Beginning, It Was Not So” was held on the church premises and featured salvation, couples reconciliation, freedom from marriage crises, restoration of broken homes and restoration of joy in marriages.
The topics treated include “Christian family”, “busy but doing nothing”, “the burden of Christian marriage: whose responsibility?”, “the role of sexual intimacy in marriage”, “faithfulness”, “Jesus the hope of marriage breakdown”, and “Igbo culture and pagan worship: any difference?”
Dwelling extensively on “Christian family” and “busy but doing nothing”, one of the invited speakers, Evangelist Nnamdi Eze, admonished the people that there are three pillars of marriage: respect, honesty and forgiveness.
He hinted that in the absence of the above three, a successful marriage would be difficult to achieve, even as he noted that people should consult God before going into marriage.
He also explained that a Christian marriage is far better than a traditional marriage, pointing out that one should marry another who listens to the Word of God.
Other speakers, including Evangelist Freshman J.N., Esq., and Rev. Fr Fidelis Onwudiufo (a.k.a Father Okenye), equally did justice to the various topics they handled during the event.
Speaking to our correspondent, the parish priest, Rev. Fr Sampson Ogbuebuna, revealed that the event was also a parish programme, stating that the essence of organising it was to reorganise the family, which he described as the nucleus of society and the seed for every being.
He said: “No person in this world has no family. Every priest has a family as well as leaders. So when the family is in [a] shambles, it will affect the Church and society.”
He also said that what various families are passing through propelled them to organise the event in the parish so that married men and women could know what to do, what not to do, what to avoid and what to bring into their marriage to help them rear their children in the manner God ordained.
The cleric hinted that the family as an institution is under attack both in society and in the Church, identifying parents’ insensitivity to their responsibility to educate their children, lack of teaching and guiding their children, incessant quest for money and no knowledge of core values as the major causes of family crises.
Commenting, the parish president of the CMO, Evangelist Emmanuel Nwode, disclosed that the event was organised to comply with the Onitsha Archdiocesan CMO leadership directives that every parish must organise one event ahead of Fathering Sunday.
He lamented the high rate of divorce suits, which according to him are heaped at different marriage tribunals, and he said that Satan has sowed evil seeds in marriages but that he was optimistic that at the end some shaky marriages would be restored.
In their separate speeches, a former Onitsha Archdiocesan president general of the CMO and also a parishioner, Hon. Ifeanyichukwu E. S. Nnajiaku KSM, and a staunch parish member of the organisation, Brother Elias Nwagu, described the event as life-changing.