Amby Uneze in Owerri
Imo State Government has resolved to partner the Catholic Church in its worldwide campaign to promote families values since the family is believed to be the engine of every society.
The state governor, Chief Rochas Okorocha gave the indication yesterday when the representative of Pope Francis, Archbishop Vincenzo Pagilla, who is the president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, paid courtesy call on him at the Government House, Owerri.
Pope’s representative was accompanied by the Catholic Archbishop of Owerri, Most Rev. Anthony Obinna and his Umuahia counterpart, Bishop Lucius Ugoji.
Okorocha said he was not surprised that the Pope could be concerned about the fate of families across the nations of the world, having seen the Pope visiting and eating with the sick, entering the mosque to pray with Muslims, and visiting refugees in war ravaged areas to sleep and eat with them, adding that the Pope by all standard is a practical Christian who is doing what Christ did while on earth.
According to him, “the Pope should be commended for the great job he is doing all over the world. What he has been doing is indeed practical Christianity. We have come to a very critical moment in our life history. We have to understand that the problem of the world is not economy, it is not terrorism, neither is it religion, the problem of the world is the lack of attention to the family and its values because if the family is right, the society will be right. It is out of the family that ISIS, Boko Haram, etc came out from, if the family values are adhered to, the world will be a better place.”
He promised that the state will key into the development of the family values, describing the Archbishop of Owerri as a frank and honest man who preaches the gospel the way it is without fear or favour and also encouraged the church to always see the good in everybody irrespective of their shortcomings.
The governor also promised to build a centre in Owerri for family reunion which will be handed over to the Catholic Church. This he said will help in rebuilding the family.
In his speech, the Pope’s representative and President Pontifical Council for the family, Archbishop Vincenzo Pagilla stated that the council’s main purpose is to foster peace and unity in the family across the globe and help inculcate good morals to the family structure.
According to him, he is in the region to help in building bridge of peace between Africa and Europe through the family re-orientation. He said “if the family is right the world will be right, this is our message.”