Easter Message: “Nigeria Will Rise Again” – CAN President

The President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), His Eminence Rev. Dr. Samson Olasupo A. Ayokunle brings to all Nigerians an Easter Message of Hope and faith in the Midst of Gloom.

NIGERIA WILL RISE AGAIN
I bring congratulatory message to all Christians all over Nigeria and by extension to all Nigerians in the name of Jesus.
The arrest of Jesus by evil men and the so-called religious leaders, his crucifixion and of course his burial were the greatest shocks in the life of his disciples. Though he told them several times that it was going to happen, considering his miraculous power, they thought nobody would be able to arrest, not to talk of crucifying him. They understood not the Scripture that Christ must suffer first before entering into his glory and be Lord over all. (Acts 24: 25-27)
 
Jesus remained three days in the grave as if He was not going to resurrect. However, on the third day, there was a great happening. There was an earthquake, the foundation of the earth was shaken and Jesus Christ, the King of Glory, the Lord of lords rose triumphantly from the dead. His resurrection brought smiles to the faces of his disciples and shame to his enemies.
 


Fellow Christians and fellow Nigerians, the situation in the country today, to say the truth, without an iota of politics looks very gloomy. There seems to be nothing to celebrate because of unimaginable insecurity. Despite the efforts of the government to arrest the situation, the scope of insecurity keeps expanding to our consternation. Coupled with insecurity are other challenges such as mass unemployment, industrial disharmony, especially that of Academic Staff Union of Universities(ASUU), just to mention but a few. The prices of goods and services have risen in a way unprecedented in our country before and entrepreneurs are relocating to other countries that have better ease of doing business. Is there anything that calls for celebration in all these things we are facing? Yes, there is. Nothing is worse than death! If Jesus died and was buried, putting his disciples in the greatest state of disappointment and sorrow but afterwards rose from the dead, then, Nigeria is going to be great again.

This nation will rise from all the challenges we are facing and we Nigerians are going to rejoice and be proud of our nation again in the name of Jesus Christ.
There is hope for a tree that is cut down but it’s root remains in the ground, at the scent of water, it will sprout again! (Job 14: 7-8)

 


My prayer to God is to fast-tract the resurrection of Nigeria from all her pains and challenges so that those of us who have tasted in the suffering in our nation might equally eat of the good of this nation in the name of Jesus Christ.
I commend our security agencies for all they are doing at nipping the ugly situation of insecurity in the bud, especially for the supreme price some of them had paid. We seize this opportunity of Easter to pray for comfort for their families and urge the government to take good care of the people they left behind.
 
I plead with the Federal Government to work harder to bring reprieve to Nigerians from all these challenges very soon.
 
Once again, I wish you happy Easter. May Hallelujah be your song forever in Jesus’ name.


Rev. Dr Samson Olasupo A. Ayokunle
President, Christian Association of Nigeria &
Co-Chairman, Nigeria Inter Religious Council

Insecurity In The Country Is The Biggest Threat To 2023 Elections – CAN

The leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has described the menace of insecurity challenges occasioned by the criminal activities of terrorists, bandits and kidnappers in the  country as the biggest threat to the next year general election.

The CAN President, His Eminence, Rev Dr Samson Ayokunle made this assertion on Tuesday evening in an interactive session which some Christian leaders had with the European Union Delegation led by the EU Chief Election Observer, Ms. Maria Arena who are on a mission to the country from 1-5 March in preparation for the coming general election observation.

The EU Delegation wanted to know the position of the Association on the preparation of all the stakeholders – the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the security agencies and the political parties.

Dr. Ayokunle who also doubles as the Co-Chairman of the Nigeria Inter Religious Council (NIREC) explained that the security situation in the country might not allow the general election to be credible, free and fair if the voters are not allowed to go out to exercise their inalienable rights because of fear of being harmed or kidnapped or killed.

“We call on the Federal Government and the security agencies to wake up to the security challenges in the country where terrorists, bandits and kidnappers are operating with impunity and nowhere is safe and secure again. If the trend continues, many voters may not participate and the outcome of the election may not be credible,” the CAN President said.

He observed that the government appears to be struggling to nip the ugly situation in the bud, their present effort is far from being enough. We have been strugglingwith this situation now for the past thirteen years, yet, we are still where we are!

He also called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to be apolitical in the assignment and asked the members of the commission who are card carrying members of the ruling party to step down or be flushed out in order to avoid compromised election results.

Ayokunle tasked INEC to borrow a leaf from its counterpart in Gambia where their recently  conducted elections were far better than Nigeria’s elections. All election observers, including All Africa Conference of Churches’ delegation that he led there adjudged the election to be credible.

According to him, ‘Gambia’s elections were more credible, free and fair. It was also free from security harassment and there was a level playing field for all the parties involved.’ ‘We are supposed to be doing better because we have more resources and more capacity than Gambian.’

L-R: Barr. Mrs. Comfort Chigbue (National Legal Director, CAN), Rev. Dr. Samson Ayokunle (President, CAN), EU Chief Election Observer, Ms. Maria Arena; Barr. Daramola Joseph (General Secretary, CAN), and Apostle ‘Biodun Sanyaolu (Assistant General Secretary. CAN)

The CAN President who disclosed that CAN has no candidate for the office of the President however reiterated the position of the Association on the need to have a Christian President as the successor of President Muhammadu Buhari who is a Muslim and would have spent eight years in office by the time he is handing over to the next president.

According to him, “Although Nigeria is practicing democracy but because of our peculiarities which include multicultural, multi-tribal, and multi-religious nature, ours should be a ‘home grown democracy’ where every divide should be given a sense of belonging. Even if the constitution is silent on the six geopolitical zones rotational representation, the political parties should be wise enough to make use of it in sharing the leadership positions. We have warned all political parties against fielding either Muslim-Muslim or Christian-Christian Presidential candidates. Since President Muhammadu Buhari is a Muslim from the North, in the interest of equity, fairness, social justice and cohesion, the next President should be a Christian from the South”.

After the interactions, the leader of the delegation, Ms Maria Arena thanked the leadership of CAN for honouring their invitation and promised to be carrying the Association along in their assignments.

Meanwhile, the CAN President, Rev. Dr Samson Ayokunle has advised all churches in Nigeria to make the first week of March a WEEK OF SOUL WINNING. He urged all churches under the umbrella of the Association to be using the week as a period of soul winning so that bloodletting and all other crimes might reduce. He urged Christians to share their faith, their testimonies and spread the gospel of God’s love and mercy to all who have not known the Lord through Jesus Christ. preach the Kingdom of God to the world.

PRESS STATEMENT: Christmas, A Season of Hope, Peace and Joy – CAN President

I rejoice with all Christians in Nigeria and of course all over the world at this season of Christmas, the season when God became man to live among us in order to redeem us from all our sins and eternal death. My prayer is that nothing would steal from your joy of this season in the name of Jesus Christ. (John 1: 14)

Let us remember that the devil is a deceiver and what we are passing through presently in Nigeria might not be what would cause us to rejoice! Of course, what we are currently passing through may not give anybody hope of tomorrow humanly speaking unless those in power are more decisive and God intervenes for us. We are experiencing insecurity everywhere, most especially, the kidnapping, wanton killings and destructions of facilities here and there by the criminals in our midst, the insurgency in the northeast, the northwest and the north central of Nigeria, just to mention a few are terrible things of great concern. They do not give us joy at all humanly speaking. However, we need to remember that part of the purposes of the birth of Jesus Christ is to give hope to the hopeless and deliver us from sin and those who hate us. He came to set the captives free.

The Bible says in 1Peter 1: 3-4 thus:

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,”

Peter’s letter really was to a people who were hopeless, otherwise, he wouldn’t have attached hope in Christ to his message.

My message to all Nigerians is to remain hopeful in Christ Jesus and rejoice in hope no matter what the situation we are passing through may be. Our Father God can turn all situations around in Christ Jesus because as God, he can do all things. He is our Way-maker and he would make way for us in the name of Jesus.

I urge you to receive Jesus as the Lord over your life today, share the message of the saving power of Jesus with others who do not know him and show love in a practical way to someone around you. Let us through the love of Christ embrace one another irrespective of religious, ethnic and political differences. Let us be reconciled to God and to one another. Let all the killings, the kidnapping of our fellow brothers and sisters and all other acts of wickedness stop because God is going to judge these acts on the day of judgement.

At this season of Christmas, I plead with those at the corridor of power to use it to bring relief and joy to the citizens of this country. It is the good you have done now that people would remember tomorrow. Please, let us lessen the pains of Nigerians by paying more attention to their well-being in the prompt payment of workers salaries and pensions to the pensioners. Let all things be done to reduce the high cost of things in the market and let enabling environment be created for employment of our youths who are roaming the streets having no job.

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I plead with all Nigerians not to let off their guards on Covid-19 protocols. The world has entered the fourth phase of the pandemic and it is spreading faster than other phases. Please, wherever you go, especially in public places such as markets and churches, wear your masks and keep all the safety protocols. 

I pray that none of us would die untimely in the mighty name of Jesus.

Once again, I wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a happy and very prosperous New Year 2022 in Jesus’ name.

Signed.

Rev. Dr. Samson ‘Supo Ayokunle

President, Christian Association of Nigeria &

Co-Chairman, Nigeria Inter Religious Council (NIREC)

23 December, 2021.

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PROPHETIC DECLARATIONS FROM THE PRESIDENT OF CAN

PROPHETIC DECLARATION: God has brought us thus far, and we are indeed grateful for His bountiful grace and mercy.

Today, we bring you prophetic declarations from God’s servant and President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Rev. Dr. Samson Olasupo Ayokunle; as he declares to you, your family, the Church, and the nation, impactful words of prayer.

Be Blessed! #PropheticDeclaration #Prayers #christianassociationofnigeria

PROPHETIC DECLARATION with Rev. Dr. Samson Olasupo Ayokunle, President, CAN

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2023 PRESIDENCY: CAN CALLS FOR A BALANCED RELIGIOUS CONSIDERATION

The leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has cautioned the political parties in the country against heating up the polity with either Christian/Christian or Muslim/Muslim presidential ticket come 2023 general election.

The counsel was made on Thursday by the CAN’s President, His Eminence, Rev. (Dr.) Samson Ayokunle in a parley of the Association’s leadership with the Deputy Senate President, Senator Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege in his office at the National Assembly complex.

As part of the CAN President’s remark, he said; “We equally want to urge you on presidency, that a balance of both religious practitioners be considered. We don’t want Christian/Christian ticket nor Muslim/Muslim ticket”.

Speaking further, Dr. Ayokunle expressed dissatisfaction with the menace of the economic downturn and its consequences on the polity and called for an enabling environment to cushion the effects on the people.

The Deputy Senate President, Senator Obasiri Ovie Omo-Agege, The CAN President, Rev. Dr. Samson Ayokunle, CAN Secretary, Barr. Daramola Joseph Bade, CAN’s Director on National Issues and Lagos State Chairman, Bishop Stephen Adegbite

He said, “Sir, the church is worried about inflation in the land which has sent many people out of business. Unemployment is at unimaginable level. While we appreciate the efforts of the legislative assemblies in calling the attention of the executive to this, more robust and daring efforts are required to nip these things in the bud. Enabling environment should be created for investments and incentives or tax exceptions given to local manufacturers on some goods.”

The CAN President commended the Federal Government on the management of the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic, also warns against forcing the people to take the COVID-19 vaccine.

His words, “We appreciate the Federal Government, especially the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 for the way this stubborn virus has been managed. We want to urge the government to continue to encourage Nigerians to take the vaccine, but never to force or coerce people into doing so.”

The Deputy Senate President, Senator Obasiri Ovie Omo-Agege, The CAN President, Rev. Dr. Samson Ayokunle, CAN Secretary, Barr. Daramola Joseph Bade, CAN’s Director on National Issues and Lagos State Chairman, Bishop Stephen Adegbite, CAN’s Legal Director, Barr. (Mrs) Comfort Chigbue

In his response, the Deputy Senate President registered his appreciation for the visit and called for more of such interaction with a view to bridging the gap between the National Assembly and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN). He also appreciated the interest and the support of the Association in the efforts of the government to promote peace and unity and in its war against the pandemic.

He tasked the Church leadership to encourage people to take the vaccine to reduce the menace if the government should not force it on them.

The parley saw an awesome interaction between the law maker and the leadership of the association.

PHOTO SLIDE: FOUNDATION LAYING OF ‘HOLY TABERNACLE EVENT CENTRE’

WEDNESDAY PHOTO SLIDE:

Foundation laying of CAN’s Marquee project, christened: “HOLY TABERNACLE EVENT CENTRE” – Friday, 24th September, 2021

Let us take you through a picture slide of this throw-back event.

In attendance were: Rev. (Dr.) Samson Supo Ayokunle, CAN President, Barr. Daramola Joseph Bade, CAN General Secretary, Apostle ‘Biodun Sanyaolu, Assistant General Secretary; and other National and state officers of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

CAN SOUTH-SOUTH PRAYER SUMMIT: “OH GOD ARISE!”

The South-South Zone of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) is set to hold a One Day Zonal PRAYER SUMMIT, with the theme: “OH GOD ARISE” (Psalms 68:1).

Scheduled for Tuesday, 12th October, 2021 at the St. Patrick Catholic Church, Ovom Yenegoa, Bayelsa State; by 11am. The mega prayer summit is designed as an avenue to seek God’s face through prayers.

All Christian within the South-South Region and beyond are encouraged to massively attend this meeting with divinity, as it is promised to be a rewarding time in God’s presence, praying in unity.

Special Guests of Honour: All South-South Governors, Rev. Dr. Supo Ayokunle (President, CAN), Guest Speaker: Bishop Dr. Wale Oke, (President, CPFN/PFN); Chief Host, Sen. Douye Diri (Executive Governor, Bayelsa State), Host: Archbishop Israel Ege (South-South CAN Chairman).

2021 SAPPHIRE (45TH) CAN DAY PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS

THE TEXT OF THE ADDRESS DELIVERED BY THE NATIONAL PRESIDENT OF THE CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (C.A.N) HIS EMINENCE, REV (DR.) SAMSON OLASUPO A. AYOKUNLE AT THE 45TH ANNIVERSARY OF C.A.N ON FIRDAY 27TH AUGUST 2021

Precious Greetings to you all in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The Bible says:

The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth forth his works. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world (Psalm 19:1-4).

The Christian Association of Nigeria is Forty-Five years old today. Our Association, which is the largest ecumenical body in Nigeria and indeed Africa was established by the collective effort of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria (CSN) and the Christian Council of Nigeria (CCN) during the then Federal Military Government under General Olusegun Obasanjo on the 27th August, 1976. Thereafter, 3 other blocs were created namely: (i) Christian Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria/Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (CPFN/PFN), (ii) Organization of African Instituted Churches (OAIC) and (iii) Tarrayar Ekklisiyoyin Kristi A Nigeria/Evangelical Church Winning All (TEKAN/ECWA) CAN was established to promote understanding, peace and unity amongst the various people and strata of society in Nigeria through the propagation of the gospel. The little acorn has since developed into a mighty oak.

It is pertinent to state that CAN is an Association of Christian Churches with distinct identities, recognizable Church structures and system of worship of one God in the Trinity of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. The Association makes Christ the centre of all its works and has continued to promote the glory of God, by encouraging the growth and unity of the Churches. No doubt, the journey has been both pleasant and intriguing. Pleasant because the inherited wall of bricks has become a city of Gold and a rallying point of faith. Intriguing because we have continued to survive challenges which threaten our unity and corporate existence. Our gratitude is borne out of the fact that “If it has not been the Lord who was on our side, now what may Israel say.” (Psalm 124).

It is indeed a thing of joy that the association has been living to its expectations and has never for once reneged on its cardinal objectives. Over the last forty-five years, the Association has been deeply engrained in its core objectives and has remained a ‘watchman’ on the spiritual and moral welfare of our Nation, Nigeria. CAN is also known as a constant force and vociferous voice against all manners of socio-political ills in Nigeria. The Association is renowned and respected for its moral and spiritual significance.

We thank and appreciate our founding fathers, past Presidents, as well as the past National Executive members who have worked assiduously in laying the right foundation for the Association on which successive administrations draw their strengths. We also appreciate everybody who have at one time or the other served the Association with their time, talent, wisdom and treasures. We cannot count our successes today without leveraging on their invaluable contributions.

As watch persons over the affairs of this Nation, we are not unaware of some of the challenges of our dear country, most especially that of religious intolerance and the activities of Boko Haram, bandits and other criminals which have made many people, particularly Christians homeless. The Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps scattered all over the country are predominantly occupied by Christians from the North West, North East and the North Central part of the Nation. It breaks our hearts that large majority of people in IDP camps are Christians, mostly displaced by religious terrorists and intolerance in their neighbourhoods. The events of the past few months had been absolutely unpleasant – gory to sight and depressing to the soul. Insecurity is so prevalent today to the extent that in the early morning of August 24, 2021, the Nigerian Defense Academy was invaded by bandits with two high ranking military officers killed and one kidnapped.

The Christian Association of Nigeria, in finding a lasting solution to the problems of our country recently released a copyright document named ‘The Charter for the New Nigeria.’ The rationale is to save Nigeria from collapse and rebuild it on a solid foundation of freedom, justice, mutual respect, and shared prosperity. The Charter for the New Nigeria© presents a simple diagnosis of why Nigeria has failed to achieve its future of justice, unity and prosperity and offers a set of structural reforms to create a new and better future for Nigeria. It is not a Christian vision. It is not a Muslim vision. It is not a southern vision. It is not a northern vision. It is the vision for all Nigerians, for a new Nigeria that works for all. The Christian community in Nigeria is worried that Nigeria is sliding towards complete state failure. We are worried that disorientation and ineffectiveness in public leadership make this a self-fulfilling prophecy. But we are reassured by the words of the Scripture that whenever a people recognize their errors and make amend, God of justice will show them mercy and the land will be healed.

Nigeria is not a lost case. Absolutely, it is not. Nigeria has hope and a great future. But that hope and future rest on resolving the constitutional incoherence that has defined our bloody past and our miserable present. But if we agree to create a new constitutional order on the basis of equality, justice, self-determination and mutual respect, if we determine to create a new social compact between Nigerians of different religious, ethnic and social groups, we will recover the promise of a great, peaceful, and prosperous Nigeria.

Dearly Beloved, I must also let you know that in commemoration of our 45th Anniversary, CAN has deemed it fit to honour and appreciate some carefully selected Christian Leaders in the positions of titular command who are projecting the image of Christ and leading according to the ethics, ethos and pathos of Christianity. These individuals will be decorated during the Dinner & Award Night which will hold in the month of September.

The age of forty-five is symbolic with truth, spirituality, balance, stability, harmony, gratitude, idealism and love, it is called sapphire. We therefore believe that the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) is entering into its God ordained year of peace, blessings, abundance and glory. The years the locusts had eaten will be restored unto us (Joel 2:25). Every written code and prophecy of doom pronounced cancelled. TOGETHER we shall surmount the problems and challenges confronting our nation. TOGETHER we shall rise above the abyss into our God ordained destiny.

TOGETHER we shall fight the monster of corruption, nepotism, religious madness and utter human wickedness bedeviling our nation. The hour has come for us to pray more and seek God’s face and intervention.    

As we look forward to more glorious years ahead, I enjoin all members of the Association to remain steadfast in prayers, resolute in their faith and trusting in the supreme Will of the Almighty God as we continue to march on in our earthly pilgrimage. I particularly appreciate our Heads of Blocs, Zonal and State Chairmen and canvass for their continuous support and solidarity in meeting our set goals and objectives. I also thank our Heads of denominations for all their support.

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We sincerely appreciate the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, the Vice President, Pastor Prof. Yemi Osibajo GCON and members of his Cabinet for the support and cooperation thus far. I also wish to appreciate all our State Governors, members of the National Assembly, the Judiciary and indeed all Nigerians for their support and conviviality given to our association at the state and local government levels. Looking forward, we enjoin them to be at their best in salvaging the country from its current socio-political ills.

Conclusively, on behalf of my good self and the leadership of our Association, I rejoice with the entire Nigerian Christian Community on the joy of this occasion. It is our prayer that the Church of God will continue to wax stronger and that the Gate of hell will not prevail against it.

Happy 45th Anniversary!

LONG LIVE THE CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA &

LONG LIVE THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA

For the King,

His Eminence Rev. Samson Olasupo A. Ayokunle (PhD)

NATIONAL PRESIDENT, CAN &

CO-CHAIRMAN, NIGERIA INTER-RELIGIOUS COUNCIL (NIREC)

NATIONAL PRAYER SERVICE: SAPPHIRE (45TH) CAN DAY CELEBRATION

The President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), His eminence, Rev. (Dr.) Samson Supo Ayokunle specially invites all Christians in Nigeria and beyond, to the SAPPHIRE (45TH) CAN DAY CELEBRATION slated to hold on Wednesday, 25th August, 2021 by 5pm, at the National Ecumenical Centre Abuja. Marked with a NATIONAL PRAYER SERVICE.

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) is the largest ecumenical body ever established in Nigeria and indeed Africa by the then Federal Military Government under General Olusegun Obasanjo, on the 27th August, 1976. Th association was established to promote understanding, peace and unity amongst various strata and people of the society in Nigeria, through the propagation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Over the last forty-five years, the association has been deeply entrenched in its cardinal objectives, and has remained a watch person on the spiritual and moral welfare of our nation, Nigeria. CAN is also known as a constant force against all manner or socio-political ills in Nigeria

To this end, the leadership of the association has deemed it great to organize a NATIONAL PRAYER SERVICE in commemoration of the 45th anniversary. A time of thanksgiving for God’s faithfulness thus far, prayers for the peace and unity for our dear country, Nigeria, and general intercession for Christians in Nigeria and all over the world.

Holding as follows: Wednesday, 25th August 2021 – National Prayer by 5pm on zoom, and streamed live on the association’s official social media handles @ChristianAssociationOfNigeria. While Friday, 27th August, 2021 by 5pm will also feature prayers at the state level, across the nation.

Christians are urged to participate fully on all activities as slated, as we prayer for God’s blessings upon our lives, families and nation.