U.S-Based Nigerian Priest Sacked For Being Materialistic

51 Comments » January 7th, 2009 posted by // Categories: Spotlight



 

PM NEWS
U.S-Based Nigerian Priest Sacked For Being Materialistic
January 06, 2009 15:38

By Simon Ateba

A Nigerian catholic priest, who was recruited to fill empty pulpits in parishes across the United States of America, was sacked for being materialistic, The New York Times newspaper has said.

The U.S. influential newspaper reports that the Nigerian priest, whose names were not mentioned, was temporary recruited at the St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church, in the Diocese of Owensboro, Western Kentucky, but was asked to go after he requested for three pairs of glasses. He was offered one for free.

“An American pastor said the Nigerian had seemed overly interested in material goods. When an ophthalmologist offered to fit him for glasses at no charge, he asked for three pairs” the newspaper reported.

Parishioners also complained that they could not understand his accent. PM.News could not establish where the Nigerian priest hails from in Nigeria. He was replaced by a Kenyan priest, Rev. Chrispin Oneko, whom the parishioners found to be different from the Nigerian.

“He listened and won people over with his humility. Where the Nigerian priest had taught the choir to sing African hymns, Father Oneko did not try to impose his worship style. And he learned to keep his sermons to no more than 15 minutes and the Masses to one hour.”

The Kenyan priest also had his trying times. The paper reports that after leading one of his first Sunday Masses at his new American parish, Rev. Oneko, was feeling content until he discovered several small notes left by his parishioners.

The notes, all anonymous, conveyed the same message: Father, please make your homilies shorter. One said even five minutes was too long for a mother with children.

One Sunday, after he opened his homily with a joke that fell flat, he said, “I know some of you are looking at your watches, so I’ll make it brief.”

Unlike in Kenya, where he had been a charismatic catholic, participating in faith healings and leading Masses with spirited singing and clapping that lasted for hours, Rev. Oneko preached slowly in America, in his Kenyan accent : “Late us prrray.” Sometimes he spelled out words when he saw the congregation looking puzzled. “B-I-R-D, not B-E-D,” the newspaper wrote.

At home, in Kenya, Father Oneko had preached to rural Africans who walked for hours to get to church and would have been disappointed if the sermons were brief.

“Here the whole Mass is one hour,” he said, a broad smile on his round face. “That was homework for me, to learn to summarize everything and make the homily 10 minutes, maybe 15. Here, people are on the move very fast.”

Most of the African priests, it was learnt, arrive knowing how to celebrate Mass, anoint the sick and baptize babies. But few are prepared for the challenges of being a pastor in America

To help Rev. Oneko understand the American experience, a volunteer in the church had to give him a high school textbook on American history and government. In Kenya, Father Oneko became the sole pastor of 12 satellite parishes in an 80-mile stretch. He served more than 3,000 people communion on a typical weekend and ran a girls high school.

It was a hardship post. His car, the only one in the vicinity, was used as a school bus, an ambulance and, if the local officers caught a thief, a police car — with Father Oneko the driver.

In Kentucky, he stuck to the music the congregation was used to at the Saturday evening Mass, that meant a faint choir of three voices; at the 11:30 a.m. Sunday Mass, an extended family of Filipinos played guitar and piano.

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51 Responses to “U.S-Based Nigerian Priest Sacked For Being Materialistic”

  1. John Johnson says:

    Many foreign priests come to the USA not to save souls, BUT TO MAKE MONEY. Few Americans understand their foreign accents. This is true wheather they be from Nigeria or India. These dudes need to stay where they belong in their own countries.

    • sundancer says:

      I am a cradle Catholic and I have yet to know a “wealthy” priest! Get real!! You’re prejudice and more than likely not a Catholic!

    • stan kennedy says:

      Hey John,

      Do you think your sentiment may have been exactly what people in Burma, Nepal, Japan or wherever may have experienced when we “exported” missionaries to those countries and they had to put up with Americans trying to learn their language, accents, customs and so forth…Without a doubt some are probably “leaving the farm and going to Paris”…interested in money etc but I suspect that is not true of all. Wouldn’t be great if some hospitality and assistance were given a foreign-born priest to see if he is teachable and can learn our ways. Possibly, John, it might broaden your horizons

    • William P says:

      OK John…and the priest from your family is??? WE wouldn’t have to import priest if we did a better job of listening to God’s call. But as this materialistic culture is slow to commit or to serve, it is no wonder we have such a shortage of priest. To those who think we should ordain married men and women, the protestants are not exactly awash with clergy either.

    • Josephine Ogden says:

      I want to say we had a African Priest as a parish helper this past summer, and looked forward to his lively attitude and genuine love of people and no, he made no reference to money….why is the Catholic Church so adverse to a priest making any reference to the need to pay for parish costs…Our Protestant church member are expected to tithe 10% of their income..and see nothing wrong with that since it is a Bible admonishment…God should bless the other 90% if the first is joyfully and gratefully given. A greedy attitude is just the opposite and deserves no blessing. Love is not GREEDY. We humans don’t like it, why should GOD? j.k.o.

    • martins says:

      Mr. John, i know you are the smartest Dude in your family. why can’t you go for a priesthood, instead of judging somebody else.

    • Zita says:

      I will like someone to show in this article where the priest in question has either requested foir money or “robbed”anyone or what he has done to show his love for materialism.
      If I go for a glass and one is free. If I want to have three, it is a simple thing: I pay for the other two. What has he done wrong? Is teaching the people African song or preaching a bit longer being materialist? I think the Americans simply do not want anyone who tells them the truth about themselves. How can you ask a priest to preach for only five minutes? Is that not a sign of demonism? How much time do the same person spend on watching football matches, films or partying, etc. They want a “toy”priest to controll, simple. When they are touched by God, they will look for better and longer sermon.

  2. A concerned Mother says:

    As a mother of 13, I ask….Since when is 15 minutes to long for a sermon??! I’m sure the children could sit still in front of a tv for hours! It is the duty of PARENTS to teach their child what Mass is about. A young child will not totally understand, but they should be able to sit quietly. If not, they can be taken out for a brief moment.

    As for the foreign priests. We can NOT judge them all under one umbrella. Just as there are good American Priests and questionable American Priests….so is the same for other countries! I have met some wonderful Nigerian Priests!

    We are so used to getting our won way here in America. It’s about time we re-think our fast paced, me now attitudes.

    • Elvis Ehidiamen Uagbor says:

      That is exactly how life suppose to be.
      Parents should learn how to culture there children to way of life according to the Bibles way.
      Just as said children could stay in front of TV for hours watching Nudity Matured men piercing all their bodies and unholy tatoos all over, watching on ethical romance and fake Love on the set. but where they suppose to know the reality of life it is kept short just for the parents to pursue self interest. The Second comming of Christ is very close. We are watching and waiting and at the same praying. Because Jesus himself says we should watch and pray.
      I am writing from Ireland and a Nigerian it is even worst down here where the protestants dont even believe in Holy Spirit. Well the race of salvation is individual thing. May God continue to help and protect us Amen

      • brother Ty says:

        May the Spirit of God never depart from you and your home! Amen.

        • Sr. D says:

          This Priest did nothing wrong. First look at the many material things most Americans have.Two cars , three homes, closets full fancy clothes ,three tvs wines/liquor/dinners,to mention a few material unnecessary things. This poor man only asked for extra eye glass. JOhn are you for real! get a life and do not judge others. Besides you must not be Catholic. Have you done your research with his other priest Brothers? Take a look at how they live. Then you can talk

  3. Stella says:

    To those who made the above comments on the Kenyan priest homilies, other African priests being too materialistic, etc., including parents with children who want a short homily I would like to say that coming to Mass is a privilege not a necessity or duty to get done with as soon as possible. If parents have children who are small and squirmy why not ask for someone to either volunteer or pay for a church sponsored ministry of nursery care. Many parishes have teenagers or others who do this and parents can participate and enjoy Mass in peace. When the children get older it is the parents DUTY to teach their children to behave during Mass and also to teach them how to participate in Mass. I have seen many parents playing with their children, five, six and up during Mass to entertain them instead of using the time as a teaching moment. Or others do worse and just the the child run wild and do whatever it wants instead of taking the child out into the foyer or the cryroom. I have attended many Traditional Latin Masses to which large families come with children ranging from newborn to eleven and up. There are the most well behaved children I have ever seen. I have been amazed that these children seem to understand what is occurring up on the altar. Maybe these parents have taken the time to explain beforehand what it means to come to Mass. I know many who read my comments will not agree and may even get a little angry about them but I think that it would be more beneficial for those who object to stop and think about what I am saying instead of reacting negatively. Because the underlying cause of their reaction may be that they don’t want to accept the responsibility and time to teach their children who they are coming to see at Mass.

    As for long homilies and materialistic priest from African countries or any other country, for that matter. If Roman Catholic American families encouraged their sons to become priests there would be no shortage of English speaking American priests and no need for foreign priests to come and serve here and they could dedicate their ministry to their own people. I know from first hand experience how hard and lonely it is for these foreign priests to come and serve where they are isolated, not understood and struggling to understand our customs. It is hard for them to understand why we American want to get Mass over with as soon as possible when in their countries people are hungry for the Word and enthusiastic about their Faith. Those who knock thess dedicated, humble and lonely priests (not those who are in it for the money, and some are, unfortunately), would not be to fast in making negative comments about foreign priests and instead work to help them and also pray for more vocations in the U,S.,

  4. tia gillam says:

    I would like to hear why the Nigerian priest asked for three pairs of glasses. Was he to materialistic or were the parishoners having trouble to train him? This Kenyan priest sounds like a wonderful priest…as are all the priests I’ve met from overseas.,..they have laid their lives down to save our souls….they’ve given up their family and homeland to come here and preach the Gospel…but we don’t have the time to listen….and that’s all we have to do is listen…benchwarmers.

  5. Philip Saenz says:

    If people understood that Catholic priests bring us Jesus in the flesh, perhaps they wouldn’t complain so much. There is much to gain from the Eucharist, the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ crucified. Believe or not, I’ve witnessed many miracles in the supernational order because of my Catholic faith, priests, and the Holy Eucharist. Without priests, probably I wouldn’t have a faith. Without priests, I would probably be a barbarian.

  6. Friday says:

    The whole story of \”metrialism\” and \”accent\” is laughable indeed. I have only two questions for the concerened people:
    (1) Who can actually tell what the Africans themselves passes through in their bid to comprehend the accent of their foreign-AMERICAN- preists? Most go home without getting a word. Have they protested ? Poor Africans, foreign missionaries are imposed on you, whether you like it or not.
    (2) Effort should have been made to find out why the Priest requested three pairs of glasses? Any answer?

    My advice to the Kenyan priest is to be careful and not to relax. The same people that shouted hossannah to the son of David also shouted, CRUCIFY him.

  7. John C. says:

    Have you seen an American with accent? Americans are being exposed for their intolerant and bigotry. Since they cannot speak their mind, they complain of accent. This unfortunately cuts across ethnic line.

  8. Scottie says:

    Definition of Materialism: a person who is markedly more concerned with material things than with spiritual, intellectual, or cultural values. Father Oneko doesn

  9. honora patrick says:

    The foreign priests I have encountered, Indian or African have been the holiest of priests and in no way materialistic, but true lovers of Jesus. Of course, there are exceptions to everything, but in my area that holds true, while the American priests wear toupees and act like girls. So, who do you think Jesus approves of?

  10. honora patrick says:

    The foreign priests I have encountered, Indian or African have been the holiest of priests and in no way materialistic, but true lovers of Jesus. Of course, there are exceptions to everything, but in my area that holds true, while the American priests wear toupees and act like girls. So, who do you think Jesus approves of?

  11. benson agbo says:

    I completely support that typical mass should not go beyond one hopur. My Catholic priest in Europe spends maximum of ten minutes for homily. Infact last time the bishop spent five minutes. When I was in Nigeria, many of the catholic priests talk out of point hence spending one hour for homily only. People in Africa tolerate spending many hours in the church because they have no value for time and people have been brainwashed that sundays are for God hence one should sleep in the church.

    If people think that spending many hours in church is a BEST PRACTICE why do we have so much corruption in Africa and Nigeria in particular. I am more inetersted at the end and not the means.

    • Okeke Simon says:

      You talk without substance. Maybe you have spent few years in America and now think that celebrating mass for over an hour is an abomination. Let me ask you, what else takes place in Nigeria on Sundays? You can’t be american more that the americans! Stop fully yourself and spend time to study the difference in the religious inclinations of different cultures. You are trying to make a case for corruption, can’t you ask why evil has not vanished from the lands where Christainity and other world religions were exported to Africa. Look within yourself and see if you are not the one who is actually brainwashed!

    • Ben(Nigeria) says:

      Agbo i don’t blame you, it is the person that made your oluwole visa i blame. The corruption rating index judges the activities of less than 1% of the Nigerian population and you are using that as your basis. An average African is by far more morally upright than a westerner. Do you even know that no Nigerian city is in the top 10 in terms of violent crimes. I need prayer my brother

    • Elvis Ehidiamen Uagbor says:

      How many hours do you spend in your office, may be your business or better still your education because I dont know which one you belong?.
      I am a Nigeria in Ireland.
      So Americans are not corrupt? Who are the course of this global recession? mayu a Nigeria where we read a Director of Companies in America dupe the innocent ones in the name of investment.
      Again we are watching and Praying.

    • Anonymous says:

      If u dont have anything to say you should simply shut up,in real sense you are the one brainwashed.pray to God to forgive your heresy.

  12. As Catholics, we should be happy to welcome a Priest from anywhere.

    It does not matter where the Prieast comes from or whether or not he has an accent, as long as he is a good Priest that is concerned for the welfare and salvation of our souls.
    Glenn Dallaire
    http://www.stgemmagalgani.com

  13. JC says:

    I just spoke about this on my blog, Staten Island Catholic: http://statenislandcatholic.blogspot.com/
    Our leaders stupidly seem to think that the solution to the priest shortage is to import African and Indian priests. Please visit my site.

  14. Friday says:

    Without mincing words, I want to believe that you could probably be among those that ochestrated the plan to kick out the Nigerian Rev Fr . in question. Agian, for the fact you had the temerity to dare retort “have you seen an American with accent?” simply exposes your high level of ignorance and out of touch. It means you do not know the meaning of accent. Please consult your Micheal West English dictionary if you still have it . If I must lecture you, if you must humble yourself enough to learn, if you would patience for more than a 15 minutes mass, then: Any dificulty (word stress, pronounciation, syllable ect) in understanding english by foreingers is accent. What of the yeyey yayaya englsih of Americans? You hardly hear them. I have been opportuned to work with a lot of Americans. Yes!!! Americans have accent. Days are gone when everything an American done is taken to be a yard stick, and acceptatble. Sorry for the “poor Africans, the so to speak labelled “third world”-where people do not have right to protest. Where people still accept sthe statusquo. Where members in most cases leave mass without understanding anything the priest said in mass. But it will not be too long…

  15. JD says:

    If the Mass was still in Latin, their would not be a problem with immigrant priests!

  16. Susan says:

    The key to understanding a priest with a heavy accent is to spend more time with him.

    One such priest, Fr. Emmanuel who came to the US from Nigeria is one of the most anointed priests I’ll ever know. After meeting him at a Marian Conference, he wanted my family to spend a day with him starting fresh at 8:00 Mass one Sunday. I struggled to understand his words, but by the end of the day I could hear him clearly. He had some much to share with us; a day I’ll cherish. We love you Fr. Emmanuel!

  17. Ben(Nigeria) says:

    Well the priest may have acted improperly, but the issue of a 15mins summon being too long is really outrageous. But i guys we turned church into a mere religious obligation. I use to be a catholic and i remember that Mass is celebrated, not attended. It is a very personal spiritual activity that requires our toal commitment. Think about it, is 15mins too much time to spend with God?

  18. Elvis Ehidiamen Uagbor says:

    What can I say I have not been involved in Catholism right from my ealy years why? how can I be in a place where I dont understand what it is being said LATIN and then the modern days even made it worst because of CHILD ABUSE, PAEDOPHILE, GAY MARRIAGES AND UNCHARACTERISTIC PRETEND HOLYNESS AND DRUNKINESS OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

  19. Ebenezer otijele says:

    The attitude of Americans toward God is becoming so disgusting. No wonder their children are getting so wayward and terrible. Marriages are breaking like waterbags. it’s so unfortunate. How can 15min sermon make a difference in the life a person exposed to the kind of pollutants they are faced with every second? I feel for them. They had better turned away from their ways and give God a chance. As for the Kenyan priest, instead of givining your life and time to those who would dictate to you, their spiritualhead, why don’t you go back to Kenya and live for God and the people that love you so much? You may not be popular or rich but God’s reward for your sacrifice is certain.

  20. Linus Ekechukwu says:

    It is not strange that Americans will feel comfortable with a Kenyan priests more than a Nigerian priest. Americans for some reasons see Kenyans as submissive or even subservient unlike other Africans.
    The Nigerian priest probably would not bend to 15 minutes sermon, an hour service or allow the parishoners to dictate for him for how to execute his priestly duties .
    I do not see how demanding three pairs of eye glasses should constitute love of materialism.
    They never accused him of stealing or of any unethical conduct. American catholic church is sick and needs deliverance.

  21. Vic Chineme says:

    Why should people worry themselves with prejudice? Since the Newspaper reported that parishoners find it hard understanding the priest from Nigeria, they should harve reported also that may be the ophthamologist did not understand him either because of his accent. It is convincing that one will request for three pairs of glasses since you can only use two, one for reading and another for sight if you do not get a bi-focal. Also the News media should know better that an Ophthamologist will only treat eye deficiencies while an optician issues glasses. So there are still a lot of behind the seen to reveal. I conclude that this is another case of stereotype.

  22. Dozie says:

    I think this is not just about the glasses, but something else. The glasses were simply a reason to let him go. A reference was made about the Kenyan priest not imposing worship style on them and that the Nigerian Priest had taught the choir to sing African hymns. I’m not saying the priest was right, because I wasn’t there, but if they noticed something(s) that didn’t auger well with them, did they talk about it, or held in their grudge until an opprtune moment?

  23. Iyke says:

    Do African Christians learn and sing English hymns? What is the meaning of Catholicism if parochialism is how these 15 minute American Christians define it? Americans complaining that others are materialistic? More than rhetorical questions! Picking on accent, African hymns and imposition of style of worship is simply another disingenious way of saying that “these priests do not look like us. Let’s get rid of them, even though our own priests have made nonsense of the priesthood, have shaken the foundation of Christianity and Catholicism with their disgusting and billion-dollar scandals. In the final analysis, God will not examine you on accent, but on charity. That is Christianity 101

    • Stephen E. Odumodu says:

      those glasses, I believe, must have been for reading . If the priest could only get one for free, he should have been advised to pay for the extras if he needed them so badly.To term him materialistic for wanting three pairs of glasses is extremely STINGY. I position reading glasses everywhere around my house, a pair in my car, in my office desk drawer, in my cabinet, in my laptop computer carrier. How much is a pair of glassses! what if he had asked for three mobile phones. Having one for every neywork in Nigeria is no big deal. Glasses are mere tools of work pls!!!

  24. Gbolahan Oyegoke says:

    Why did people became hungry when Jesus was preaching to them? It was becuase they need to hear and hear good. This will certainly take hours not fifteen minutes or so. after Jesus spoke to them for a long hour, The materialistic issue is an after thought and baseless. He who has ear, let him hear.

    It appears that the New York Times’ reporter(s) has no sense for what should constitute news and what should be gist.

    • OZION HILLARY says:

      WELL, TO ME 15 MINUTES IS LIKE A LIFE TIME GIVEN TO GOD IN JUST A SITTING BY THE AMERICANS & PEOPLE LIVING IN AMERICA BECAUSE THEY NEED ALL THE HOURS OF THE DAY TO WATCH TV PROGRAMES, TAKE DRUGS, PARTYING, COMMITING CRIMES, DISSCUSING & PLANNING WARS & TO GREAT EFFECT HOW TO PLUNDER AFRICA THE MORE.

  25. manu says:

    If it is done by an African it becomes a sin, but if the same thing is done by a white person nobody hears about it. My grandmother never understood what the white missionaries were babbling but she kept going to Church without complaining. Africa’s best end up in the west. Nobody is complaining about the crude oil from Nigeria, nobody is complaining about the Nigerian medical doctors, nurses and professors that work in the U.S. People will hear when they need to hear. I’m sure that priest’s color is the real issue and has nothing to do with being materialistic. Who is this judge of materialism?

  26. Mike says:

    First of all Cattholic parrish priests don’t make much money. Actually, quite the opposite. Let’s not even talk about what their retirement consists of. Most people in positions of extensive reading, writing and research will have more than one pair of glasses. Sounds very reasonable to me. It’s not like a new BMW or Mercedes was desired like you see clergy from other branches of Christemdom driving around. Secondly, if parishioners are seeking fast-food type mass, then why even bother attending church. I’m sure many spend more time doing what they probably should not do. Bottom line – don’t waste God’s time with your materialist sense of time which appears to be a common disease in the U.S. Finally, any church that reaks of prejudice and cultural criticism is dead in spirit and has completey missed the tmessage Jesus Christ altogther. By the way, the word Catholic means “universal” (Wow, imagine that!!!) . Lack of communicative skills to overcome communication and cultural barriers is simply a symptom of ignorance and a severe lack of education. Today, the Catholic church has more serious problems than a foriegn priest who could use a 3 pairs glasses, an accent and a desire for a little more time to get the Christian message to a bucnh a baffoons who may spend more time at Burger King or the internet on sites they shouldn’t be visiting.

  27. Dee Deegi says:

    I STRONGLY BELEIEVE THAT IT IS TIME AMERICA DEFINES THEIR PRIORITIES. IF PRAYING TO GOD FOR 15 MINUTES IS OF ANY CONCERN TO AMERICANS THEN THEY SHOULD RETHINK.
    PRAYER IS A PERSONAL THING AND MUST NOT BE MIXED UP WITH STEREOTPYING ANY PERSON(S).
    AS ON WRITER WROTE, I WEAR GLASES AND I HAVE FOUR PAIRS FOR FOUR DIFFERENT LOCATIONS, IN MY HOUSE, WHAT IS WRONG IN REQUESTING THREE PAIRS OF GLASSES. THE MOST FUNNY CHRISTIANS IF THEY ARE ONE AT ALL ARE CATHOLICS. THEY LIVE AND BREATH FALSHOOD IN ALL THEY DO. AND AN AMERICAN CATHOLIC IS EVEN THEY WORST COMBINATION OF ALL. IF ALL THE SCAMS THAT HAPPENED IN AMERICA DURING THIS ECONOMIC MELTDOWN WHERE IN AFRICA, IT WOULD HAVE BEEN THE 20-20 ISSUE OF ALL TIMES. GIVE AFRICANS A BREAK, UNTIL ALL THEY ATROCITIES AMERICAN COMMITTED AGAINST THEY WORLD IS DELIVERED THEIR WILL NOT BE ANY PEACE IN THIS WORLD.

  28. larry says:

    I can relate to this strange publication. Of course, it is just out to rudicule people of other cultures. Getting three pair of glasses is better than sexually molesting altar boys and vulnerable adults. It is also better than bringing young adults over here with the hope of making them priests and nuns – only to abuse them and rub them of their catholic faith. I know a lot of people this has happened to – in the name of Catholicism and superiority. This publication will not be fair and balanced – unless the positive and negative influences of American missionaries in other parts of the world especially Africa – is also brought to light for us to see. Then we can judge fairly. At the end of the day, you will see that getting three pair of glasses – if at all it happened that way – is nothing compared to what your missionaries are doing else where. Men, PICK UP YOUR BIBLE AND START PRAYING THE “PSALMS” THAT WILL HELP A GOOD CATHOLIC IN FALLING IN LOVE WITH JESUS. ALL THESE GAMES WON’T CUT IT!

  29. Law says:

    Dear folks, I have read with interest all the write-ups on the issue. I am a catholic and God willing I will die a catholic. I am so encouraged by the way you have handle this case raised by the media. Somebody talked about abuses. It seems to me that American presentation of the priesthood is unfair. How can somebody be called to defend something that took place 50 years ago, if it ever happened. The priest concerned is so humiliated that he could not find words to defend himself. Who can remember what happened at such length of time with precision? I think it is also one of the American madness to cash on the mother church. It was the abuse of boys, now it is accent of foreign priest, it will be materialism tomorrow, poor priests. Go call your trial lawyers to get you millions of dollars so that you will reap where you did not sow. God will punish those who go on taking advantage of the simple nature of the mother church. Remember when you persecute the church, body of Christ, and it is Christ himself you are persecuting. Have a good day.

  30. jessica ochi says:

    judging by what i read about the church, i believe they lied about the Nigerian priest. its obvious he did not agree to their 5 min homily nonsense and then the logical thing to do was to mess up his name so he can be removed after all he is Nigerian so people will believe the worse. its a pity that the so called western world have decided what time should be given to God. imagine telling a priest u want 5 min preaching.  i pray for Grace upon the Kenyan priest and also pray he refuse to let his fire for Gods work diminish because of people who consider going to church as a chore! 

  31. Ambrose Muma says:

    Thank you New York Times for this article I have just downloaded and read. I can see it is a comparison of two servants. What I realized from the article is that even though one is praised (the Kenyan, Fr. Crispin), his imperfections are also mentioned. The truth I can tell, not an opinion, is this: The Missionaries from Europe and America, who Evangelized Africa all spoke with an accent, and never ever spoke like Africans. Often times the African people didn’t get even a word, but they really loved the accent, and even imitated after them. I think we should learn to tolerate those who are different from us. I can tell you this, again not an opinion, but another truth, that, even in Kenya, a person from another tribe speaks with an accent if he is speaking another language. Even if we send an American to Africa to live there for ever, he will still speak with an accent.
    If it is true that the priest from Nigeria asked for three pairs of spectacles, that is wrong since he can only use one pair at a time until he can replace it. As far as him being a materialist, I can say that all people are materialists to some extent, including Saints, and even Jesus Himself was.

    In Africa, Sunday and Saturday are days to worship God. After Mass (which lasts not less than 3 hours) the faithful go to lunch, then from 2pm to 6pm, they go to Small Christian Communities, visit the home-bound and the sick. No other activities take place. Here, I have met many Catholics who have directly told me that if Mass goes beyound one hour, in fact some told me if it went beyound 45 minutes, they will go before it is offer, because they said TIME IS MONEY in America. I wonder whether that Nigerian priest is more materialistic than those who say TIME IS MONEY on Sundays. I confess to you that one of my classmates in the University in Louisiana told me he joined the Baptist Church because the Catholic Liturgy was too long. If
    the priests who come from Africa to work here do so for material gain as their main goal instead of saving souls, that defeats the main reason why they were Ordained. He should know that Americans are very generous people. They know hospitality. If a priest serves them well, they know how to take very good care of that good priest, no matter the geographic region he comes from. A good priest should put the Souls first, not money and other material things, because, as I have said, his needs will be taken care of by those he serves. Unfortunately some of the priests are as the article reports, including some American-born priests. What a pity!! I have never heard of a priest, even a bad one who was neglected by the Faithful. The article points out one very important virtue possessed by the Kenyan priest-HUMILITY. What I can say is that Humility is a virtue desirable of all the faithful. In fact, there is no saint who was deficient of this particular virtue. Maybe my only word is this: The only good thing we can do if our priest is not serving us well,
    that should be brought to his attention if we want him to change, than going to the media to ashame him. Once more, thank you for this article. It teaches me on what to be and what not to be. Finally, for those whose task is picking others’ mistakes, it is not too late for you to learn that your own mistakes and/or sins are not better that others’.

    Ambrose Muma-A Catholic Seminarian at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary, Denver, Colorado

  32. Ambrose Muma says:

    Thank you New York Times for this article I have just downloaded and read. I can see it is a comparison of two servants. What I realized from the article is that even though one is praised (the Kenyan, Fr. Crispin), his imperfections are also mentioned. The truth I can tell, not an opinion, is this: The Missionaries from Europe and America, who Evangelized Africa all spoke with an accent, and never ever spoke like Africans. Often times the African people didn’t get even a word, but they really loved the accent, and even imitated after them. If the African people had rejected the missionaries just because they spoke with an accent, then Christ would have not been known there. I think we should learn to tolerate those who are different from us. I can tell you this, again not an opinion, but another truth, that, even in Kenya, a person from another tribe speaks with an accent if he is speaking another language. Even if we send an American to Africa to live there for ever, he will still speak with an accent.
    If it is true that the priest from Nigeria asked for three pairs of spectacles, that is wrong since he can only use one pair at a time until he can replace it. As far as him being a materialist, I can say that all people are materialists to some extent, including Saints, and even Jesus Himself was.

    In Africa, Sunday and Saturday are days to worship God. After Mass (which lasts not less than 3 hours) the faithful go to lunch, then from 2pm to 6pm, they go to Small Christian Communities, visit the home-bound and the sick. No other activities take place. Here, I have met many Catholics who have directly told me that if Mass goes beyound one hour, in fact some told me if it went beyound 45 minutes, they will go before it is over, because they said TIME IS MONEY in America. I wonder whether that Nigerian priest is more materialistic than those who say TIME IS MONEY on Sundays. I confess to you that one of my classmates in the University in Louisiana told me he joined the Baptist Church because the Catholic Liturgy was too long. If
    the priests who come from Africa to work here do so for material gain as their main goal instead of saving souls, that defeats the main reason why they were Ordained. He should know that Americans are very generous people. They know hospitality. If a priest serves them well, they know how to take very good care of that good priest, no matter the geographic region he comes from. A good priest should put the Souls first, not money and other material things, because, as I have said, his needs will be taken care of by those he serves. Unfortunately some of the priests are as the article reports, including some American-born priests. What a pity!! I have never heard of a priest, even a bad one who was neglected by the Faithful. The article points out one very important virtue possessed by the Kenyan priest-HUMILITY. What I can say is that Humility is a virtue desirable of all the faithful. In fact, there is no saint who was deficient of this particular virtue. Maybe my only word is this: The only good thing we can do if our priest is not serving us well,
    that should be brought to his attention if we want him to change, than going to the media to ashame him. Once more, thank you for this article. It teaches me on what to be and what not to be. Finally, for those whose task is picking others’ mistakes, it is not too late for you to learn that your own mistakes and/or sins are not better that others’.

    Ambrose Muma-A Catholic Seminarian at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary, Denver, Colorado

  33. Mary says:

    Mr John Johnson, what has pair of glasses got to do with been materialistic?. I thought the Priest collected money ilegaly.Well,this shows what kind of mind Mr John Johnson has. Better get involved in something that will improve your way of life and leave the Priest of God alone or His judgement falls on you.A word is sufficient for the wise if at all you are one.

  34. Comedian Rollybaba says:

    What a nonsence people that think with their legs. Spend 5mins or even 1hr with your boyfriend or girl friend once a week if you will not have one year of unhealthy relationship. This is evidence that Americans don’t have time for God

  35. blitz blitz says:

    The simple solution is to allow the Americans to starve for the word of GOD until they learn to appreciate. Who knows, maybe, they will even travel to other countries just for the Word of God, no longer minding the accents.

  36. Uchendu Ugochukwu says:

    Americans need to repent, just 15mins of homily and dey are complaining.Three pairs of glasses for a Priest is termed materialiistic, I wonder or is it because he is a Nigerian that makes him materialistic. Listen Mr Johnson, the Roman catholic church is one, it does not matter if the priest is a Nigerian,Kenyan or American, your only reason for going for mass is to join in the Eucharistic celebration and you can always do that irrespective of the accent or language. seek for God with a sincearity of heart. Stop looking for faults. Let your Priest be.

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