The leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has frowned at the act of the Pastor arrested in Ondo who reportedly camped his church members in the church premises, misleading them into believing that the Second Coming of Jesus Christ popularly referred to as the Rapture is now.
CAN spoke as the Catholic Diocese of Kafanchan, Kaduna State, has confirmed the release of Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Silas, barely 24 hours after he was abducted by some armed men.
According to reports, one Josiah Peter Asumosa, an assistant Pastor in a church located in Ondo West Local government area of Ondo State lied to the uninformed members of the church that Rapture would take place in April but later said it had been changed to September, 2022 and told the young members to obey only their parents in the Lord.
CAN noted that though the Pastor in question and his church, the Whole Bible Believers Church, are not members of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) at all levels, the fact that the church claims to be a Christian church necessitates that it states its position on his practice.
“We are therefore calling on the Police to thoroughly investigate him and his activities with a view to prosecuting him and his cohorts if there had been any infringement on the law of Nigeria and the rights of the members in his custody.
“No true Pastor would claim to know the date of the rapture because the Bible has stated it clearly that it is only God who knows the date. Whoever claims to know the date is not only misleading the public but cannot claim to be a genuine servant of God. He is at best, an agent of Satan pretending to be a Pastor.
“CAN, therefore, commends the Police for their prompt actions which included rescuing over 70 victims from the Church premises. They should further be subjected to medical check ups since nobody knows what they were going through where they were camped.
“We hereby urge all denominations to keep an eye on the pastors under them towards ensuring wholesome biblical conduct.
“Members of the churches all over the nation are enjoined to cross-check every teaching from the Bible before believing it,” the statement, signed by Pastor Adebayo Adedeji, the Special Assistant to the CAN President, Dr. Samson Ayokunle, said.
Meanwhile, Rev. Fr. Silas was kidnapped from the parish rectory at St. Charles Catholic Church in Zambina, Kauru Local Government Area of Kaduna state in the early hours of Monday.
In a statement, the Chancellor of the Diocese, Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Okolo, thanked everyone who offered prayers for the quick release of the priest.
“With hearts filled with joy, we raise our voices in a symphony of praises as we announce the return of our brother, Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Silas.“
He was abducted by armed persons from the parish rectory at St. Charles Catholic Church, Zambina, in Kauru Local Government Area, in the early hours of Monday, July 4th 2022,” the statement read.