Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Archbishop of Abuja Catholic Archdiocese, Most Rev Ignatius Kaigama, has advised religious leaders, particularly Christian leaders, to desist from engaging in “political prophecy” that are often used to endorse politicians.
He said that religious leaders must always resist the temptation to do the bidding of the influential people by prophesying electoral victory for them or massaging their worldly ego at private or public meetings.
Speaking at Saint James Catholic Church, Dawaki, Abuja, Archbishop Kaigama lamented the rising number of such religious leaders who derive pleasure in political prophecies, stating that such political patronage had affected the primary responsibility of religious leaders which is leading people to Christ.
He exonerated Catholic priests who, he said, are not like many contemporary ministers who are out to seek comfort, affluence and convenience, but are called to identify with flocks in their social and existential contexts.
Archbishop Kaigama advised religious leaders to remain ardent in preaching the truth with courage and not be deterred even by threats to life because they are called to be the Jeremiah of their time by constantly speaking truth to power.
“Unfortunately, many religious leaders who are sadly preaching miracles and prosperity are now dabbling into political forecasting in the name of divine prophecy.
“When they claim that party A or B will win elections in a given state or nation, or that a certain strong political personality will win rather than the other, these are mere fruits of political calculations or pure guesswork, and may not be a result of any special supernatural or divine revelation,” he said.
He maintained that serious religious leaders must not arrogate to themselves prophetic political certitude by such distracting predictions when they should be only concerned with issues of moral regeneration of lives and the constant call to spiritual decency.
He insisted that Prophets should worry about people, encouraging them to do away with a mentality that rationalises sin, corruption and calls evil, good.
“True Prophets don’t just glory in predicting the political future, they are to serve the people of God and to bring God’s word to them, be models and witnesses by the edifying words that come from their lips and the courageous witness of their lives,” he added.