From Idongesit Inyang
As the 2023 general election approaches, religious organizations have again been charged to pray fervently for peaceful campaigns, elections and the will of God in the choice of leadership.
They have also been asked to pray against insecurity in form of kidnapping for ransom, thuggery, arson, hooliganism, robbery, banditry among other criminal activities.
Cross River State governor, Senator Ben Ayade, made the appeal recently in his office in Calabar when the president and members of the national and local organizing committee for the 2022 Calabar City Crusade of the Apostolic Church Nigeria paid him a courtesy visit.
Ayade, who called for politics with ethics, said elections should not be a do or die affair but a fair and peaceful exercise where people are allowed to chose whoever they desire to lead them without any rancour.
Represented by his deputy, Prof. Ivara Esu, the governor particularly charged the Apostolic faithful to pray for the emergence of a God-fearing man to lead the state in the next dispensation and a man who will return the state to its former status of peace and hospitality.
He, however, decried the sudden appearance of insecurity in the state, which has led to the recent kidnapping incident along Unyanga-Ugep road where nine persons were reported to have been abducted.
While still emphasising prayers as the key to peaceful coexistence, Ayade asked the Apostolic Church to use its virtue as a set full of contentment, God-fearing, prayers, humility and of good conduct to focus on a total healing of the land during their crusade.
Speaking earlier, the leader of the team and president of the Apostolic Church Nigeria, Pastor Samuel Igwe, described the citywide crusade as a divine visitation that is geared towards liberating people from all forms of afflictions.
Pastor Igwe also remarked that the crusade will lead to the salvation of souls, deliverance of people from bondages, healing of the land and uncommon fruitfulness for the people and government of Cross River State.
Unveiling the theme of the crusade tagged, The Great Escape,the Apostolic leader explained that sin is ravaging the world, poverty taking over people and nations and cities submerged by flood.
He also mentioned widespread insecurity and banditry in the land, nations rising against nations while governments are failing in their promises to the people.
While quoting from Psalms 124:7, he maintained that “these are signs of danger and the need for people to seek a way of escape from the impending doom,” regretting that “the city of Calabar with one of the largest Christian population in Nigeria, is gradually sliding to lawlessness and sinful acts.”
The Apostolic clergy pleaded “We should seek an escape from sin into salvation through Christ, from sickness into healing and divine health, from barrenness to fruitfulness, from poverty into wealth and abundant life in Christ.”
Igwe told the governor that the Lord mandated the Apostolic Church to bring the gospel of righteousness to the land and people of Calabar in particular and Cross River State and its environs at large, explaining,” It only when the righteous is on the throne that the people will rejoice.”
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