Last Sunday, a few hours before we gathered for our joyous Pentecost Celebration, a group gathered at Mass in the town of Owo in southwestern Nigeria were praying the same Prayers and listening to the same readings as we were when militants burst in and began shooting. When they were done, at least fifty people lay dead.



   Just a couple of weeks ago I wrote about another attack on Catholics in Nigeria. While we need to show concern for all people, we should give particular attention to our brethren in the Faith. While the militant attacks in Nigeria have not been as powerful as the attacks Russia has perpetrated on Ukraine (where our attention is also rightly focused), the length of time over which they have been occurring (over two decades) has caused great trauma in Nigerian society. May we not forget those who are innocent victims in the middle of the conflicts in Nigeria!

I invite you to pray the following prayer sometime this week adapted from a Nigerian text - for

All Powerful and Merciful Father, You are the God of Justice, Love and Peace. You rule over all the Nations on earth. Power and Might are in Your hands and No one can withstand You.

   We present Nigeria before You. We praise and thank You,for You are the source of all we have and are. We are sorry for all the sins we have committed and for the good deeds we failed to do.

   In Your loving forgiveness, keep us safe from the punishments we deserve. Lord, we are weighed down not only by uncertainties, but also by moral, economic and political problems.

   Listen to the cries of Your people who confidently turn to You. God of Infinite Goodness, Our strength in adversity, Our health in weakness, Our comfort in sorrow, be merciful to us Your people. Spare this nation Nigeria from chaos,anarchy and doom. Bless us with Your Kingdom of Justice,Love and Peace.

   We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen. Our Lady Queen of Nigeria, pray for us.