Awka – The Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Reverend Paulinus Ezeokafor, has beckoned on Anambra residents to visit the designated health centres and get themselves vaccinated against the coronavirus, even as he doused the fear of possible side effect of vaccine as expressed in some quarters.
Bishop Ezeokafor who stated this at St. Andrew’s Parish, Adazi Nnukwu, in Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State while delivering a homily to mark this year’s Chrism Mass/Cathedraticum Celebration, stressed the need for people to harken to the call for COVID-19 vaccination by the government.
Acknowledging that no vaccine was entirely free from side effects, Bishop Ezeokafor said the vaccine would help in no small measure, in checkmating the spread of the disease.
He noted that even though there were elements of insincerity on the side of the government, people should ignore that aspect and focus on that which, he said, would better their living and save them from contracting the disease.
“COVID-19 is still very much around and deadly. People are still contracting the virus and dying especially in the developed countries of the world. I urge Anambra people to keep to COVID-19 protocols by maintaining social distancing, washing their hands regularly, also wearing of Facemasks at all times and observing other non-pharmaceutical protocols that can prevent the spread of this deadly virus,” he said.
The Local Ordinary stated that people should not allow the rumours making the rounds that the vaccine could be injurious to their health to discourage them from getting vaccinated.
The Cleric while speaking on the essence of the Chrism Mass cum Cathedraticum Celebration, charged Christians to always support their priests spiritually, physically and materially, saying that as followers of Christ, they should understand that priests were Christ’s representatives on earth and deserved to be encouraged and protected.
Bishop Ezeokafor enjoined the priests to endeavour to practice what they preach, noting that their primary assignment was to propagate the Gospel of Jesus Christ and urging them to continue in their onerous task of winning souls for Christ.
The prelate admonished; “Priests must always see themselves as Christ’s representatives here on earth and endeavour to carry out their assignments with utmost sense of humility and responsibility. Many families, individuals, group and society at large look up to them for direction. Therefore, whatever you do, you must be mindful so as not to lead people astray.”
The Catholic Prelate who at the ceremony supervised the renewal of ordination vow by priests in the Diocese, said priests must endeavour to lead lives that would reflect Christ in all aspects as they relate with the people.