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Cleric counsels divorced couples … Says it’s against the Word of God

Married couples who are divorced or separated have been charged to reconcile and come together again as husbands and wives.
Preaching a homily during a special service to round off the 2022 marriage anniversary celebration of Christ’s Anglican Church Owerri, last Sunday, the Vicar of the church, Ven. Dr. Simeon U.N. Duruji, pointed out that divorce is against the word of God.
He noted that marriage is the oldest institution of mankind, established by God himself, adding that couples should always listen and adhere to the word of God.
Ven. Duruji, who is also a lecturer at the Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education (AIFCE) Owerri, stressed the need for tolerance, mutual commitment, faithfulness and understanding in order to have a successful marriage, even as he warned against carelessness, indecent dressing, especially by women, as well as extra-marital affairs.
The Archdeacon appreciated all the members of the church who have lived together as husbands and wives for more than 20 years, stressing that “marriage is not a white collar job.”
The service was conducted by Rev. Canon Lloyd Osuagwu while the first and second lessons were read by the Chairman of the Planning Committee, High Chief Sampson Oparaugo, and Mrs. Chioma Onuegbu, respectively.
The service also featured cutting of the marriage anniversary cake as well as presentation of awards to celebrants.
A total of 27 couples were honoured, including Hon. Justice Sir & Lady B.A. Njemanze, Hon. Sir & Lady Ernest Ibejiako, Ven. & Mrs. Solomon Okoronkwo, Chief & Lolo Godwin Emeruem, Barr. Sir & Lady Egeonu Mere, Sir & Lady Emma Nnawuchi, High Chief & Lolo Sampson Oparaugo, Sir & Lady Josiah Echefu, Sir & Lady Godwin Ezebuike, among others.
The two-day programme, which has “Causes of Breaking marriages and Formidable Marriages” as its theme, started with a seminar the previous day.
Delivering the seminar, the guest lecturer, Ven. Dr. Obinna Oke, maintained that for any marriage to be successful, it must be rooted in God through Jesus Christ.
He highlighted some of the causes of marriage break-up which include lack of love, attention, care, understanding, unfaithfulness, disobedience, annoyance, comparison and competition adding that marriage is a cross that must be carried faithfully.
Ven. Oke, who is the Vicar of St. James Anglican Church Uzii Owerri, also cautioned intending couples to avoid infatuation and to marry through the right and proper channel.
He condemned in its entirety, the modern trend of embarking on traditional wedding after church wedding and called on intending couples to desist from such.
“Never destroy the trust of your spouse. Try and meet up the needs of your spouse. Marriage is a cross any person must carry faithfully. Always pray for your spouse,” the lecturer admonished couples.
Ven. Oke equally stated that intending couples must pass through counseling in order to avoid marriage break-ups.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Vicar, Ven. Dr. Duruji explained that the essence of the programme was to tap or learn from the experiences of those who have been living together for more than two decades as well as to help address present ugly trends in marriage, especially the increasing cases of divorce.
He regretted that marriage, which is supposed to be for better for worse, has become try your luck, adding that the programme is also aimed at bringing separated couples together and teaching all couples what marriage is all about for onward transmission to their younger ones.
Ven. Duruji, who pointed out that the programme is not a money-making venture, expressed satisfaction with the turn out, stressing that ‘God does not work with number’.
In his remarks, the chairman of the marriage anniversary planning committee, High Chief Sampson Oparango charged wives to be submissive to their husbands even as he urged husbands to love their wives.
He also commended the Vicar for his vision in initiating the programme which has benefitted them positively and thanked the guest lecturer for honouring the invitation and doing justice to the theme.
Also speaking, one of the celebrants who also participated in the seminar, Hon. Sir Emmanuel Nnawuchi, expressed satisfaction with the programme and gave kudos to the Vicar for his unique vision. He advocated the sustenance of the programme.

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