For those in the habit of stealing Church funds and property, God’s wrath can be quick and harsh especially when the congregation make passionate and powerful appeals to God to expose and reward the culprits.
In two recent instances at St Cyprian’s Cathedral, Abakpa Nike in the Anglican Diocese of Nike, Enugu State, a young man suspected to have stolen N400,000 church fund is reported to have gone mad while an active member who allegedly pilfered tithe revenue has been hospitalized for long.
Christian Voice was told by a reliable source that over N400,000 was reportedly missing from about N2,000,000 realised during the last Mothering Sunday activities in the Cathedral.
The Vicar of the Cathedral, Ven Aghanamba was said to have announced the loss to the congregation and for three consecutive Sundays repeated the announcement appealing to the culprit to return the money with the assurance that his/her identity would be protected.
As none responded to the plea, the Archdeacon was said to have led the congregation in special and powerful prayers appealing to God to expose the culprit, a routine that persisted for three Sundays.
Recently, however, there was a development which convinced the congregation that the effect of their collective prayers was at work.
According to sources, a young man with disheveled appearance like one in his early stages of madness has been coming to the Cathedral gate several times daily to scream rather defiantly, “I took the N400,000. Tell the Archdeacon I took it and so what?”
As members of the congregation were still giving praises to God for exposing and dealing with the man who stole the N400,000, they were shocked last Sunday by the content of a letter from one of their active members who has been hospitalized for months for spinal problems.
In the letter, the man whose church group members have been assisting in sundry ways, was said to have confessed that he has embezzled tithe proceeds and requested the congregation to pray for him for God’s forgiveness.
In a democratic process, the vicar was said to have invited contributions from the congregation on the letter.
Eyewitnesses said those who spoke thoroughly lambasted the sickman for daring to tamper with God’s money with one pointedly remarking that his illness could be a mark of God’s wrath and that the congregation could incur God’s wrath if they prayed against His will.
Three years ago, the Cathedral’s public address system was removed by unknown persons and after the congregation had collectively prayed to God to intervene, the culprit allegedly reported himself to the then vicar, Ven Onyia.
He was said to have confessed to stealing the item and that since then he had had no peace for which he requested the priest to pray to God to forgive him.