Richard Elesho/ Lokoja
For the first time in the history of Kogi State, Lugard House, its seat of power played host to a large number of Christians who congregated there for a Christmas Carol. The service held Saturday at the newly built Government House Chapel.
Since the state was created nearly thirty years ago in 1991, the Government House has been without a place of worship for Christians. But the current Governor, Alh. Yahaya Bello, a Muslim proved skeptics wrong when he embarked on building the chapel.
The excitement on the faces of worshippers knew no bound as the electrifying music from various Church Choir attracted wild jubilation and ecstatic dancing steps from the worshipers.
The carol, a service of nine lessons, saw the denomination of churches united by their choir group, singing melodious songs to mark the birth of Jesus the Christ. It was followed by the reading of Bible lessons by clergymen and top government functionaries.
The Kogi State Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria, Bishop John Ibenu in his sermon, said Christmas calls for getting closer to God. He read from the Holy Bible John 3 vs 16 and 1st John 3 vs 5, noting that Jesus came for the salvation of man.
Ibenu lamented that the hearts of man is daily becoming wicked, and said the building of the government house chapel is for man to get closer to God. He described sin as a sickness that has Jesus as its only cure.
In his remarks, the Kogi State Deputy Governor, Chief Edward Onoja, described the maiden edition of the Christmas carol held in the government house as a dream made possible by the commitment of Gov. Yahaya Bello.
He described the coming together to celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ in the Government House Chapel as the beginning of a new dawn for the people and assured that with prayers, the state is set to be the envy of other States.
Dignitaries that graced the carol include: the Speaker of the Kogi state Assembly, Rt Hon. Matthew Kolawole, The Secretary to government, Dr. Mrs Folashade Ayoade, the Head of Service, Deborah Ogunmola, the traditional institution and a host of other personalities.pp
Highlight of the carol was intense prayers for the government, and people of the state for a prosperous new year, peaceful coexistence and unprecedented all round successes in the new year.