… Archbishop Akubeze Eulogises Edo State Second Family
Edo State Deputy Governor, Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu and spouse, Maryann, have been honoured with the “Exemplary Couple Award” by the Catholic Church for their selfless service to God and humanity.
Presenting the Award to the State’s number two family, the Archbishop, Catholic Archdiocese of Benin City Metropolitan See, His Grace, Most Rev. (Dr.) Augustine Akubeze, said “the Award was given to the couple, Rt. Hon.Comrade Philip and Mrs. Maryann Shaibu for their selfless service to the church and humanity”.
He added: “their contributions to the people of God and development of Edo State at large are cogent factors for the well – deserved Award”.
During the celebration of mass,the Archbishop made reference to the gospel, according St.Luke chapter13 vs 24, exhorting the congregation: “strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough”.
According to Very Rev. Fr.Augustine Ehigie, who delivered the homily, ” the text reveals that we cannot enter heaven by our own will or through our own efforts. it tells us that though some will try to get to heaven through their own efforts,, this approach will not work”.
He added: “upon meeting our Lord, after death, they will be surprised that they are not members of His Kingdom”.
“It takes true humility to face the truth, at times, and to admit if we are trying to rely more upon ourselves than upon Christ. The “narrow gate’ is that gate through which the humble enter. Pride and self-sufficiency lead us to attempt to make our own path to heaven. But this path is never the correct one,” Rev. Fr. Ehigie noted.
Receiving the Award on behalf of the Deputy Governor and his wife, Mrs. Sabina Chikere, Permanent Secretary, Edo State Sports Commission, affirmed that “it is a well- deserved Award for their selfless service to the church, people of God and humanity”.
She stressed that ” the Award will spur them to do more in their avowed commitment to continually assist the church of God and the people”.
The Exemplary Couple Award bestowed on the Deputy Governor and his wife, Maryann is coming few weeks after they were separately honoured by St.Paul’s Catholic Church, Benin City,for their quest at advancing the cause of the gospel and uplift of humanity.