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Inter-Religious Understanding: Shiites Visit And Worship With A Catholic Church In Zaria

By The Nigerian Voice

Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), on Tuesday, attended the 2019 New Year Catholic Church Service at St. Mary’s Parish Church, Samaru, Zaria, Kaduna State, to strengthen inter religious harmony and enhance national cohesion.

Commenting on behalf of the group, the leader of the delegation, Prof. Isa Mshelgaru of Building Department, Faculty of Environmental Design, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, said the visit was to strengthen relationship between the two faiths.

Mshelgaru said the visit was meant to further boost the bond of relationship between the followers of two faiths toward fostering national unity.

He observed that going by the tenets of the two major religions in Nigeria, that none of them preached violence, adding that they both preached peace, love, unity and joy.

The don described Christians as the closest people to Islam but lamented that Nigerians were divided by selfish politicians who hide under religion to achieve personal desires.

“Killing one another is an imaginary life; in the actual sense, it does not exist; we are all created by one God, we must therefore, endeavour to live together in peace with one another.

“We should share joy, happiness and sorrow together. Our leader, Sheik Ibrahim El-Zazzaky said we should learn to live together in peace.

“When we are united as Nigerians, nothing will break us apart and nothing will go against the peace of the nation, not even Boko Haram or militants or any other thing else.”

Responding, the Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Michael Ibrahim-Bazai, expressed appreciation for the visit, describing it as the first of its kind.

“We are happy to receive our brothers and sisters from Islamic faith here in our Church to celebrate with us today on 1st January 2019.

“It is true that sometimes we are scared of each other, this is because some of us are ignorant of the religion but we are all one.”

He stressed the need for followers of the two religions to always practice their religion according to their tenets to pave way for peaceful and harmonious relationship.