• Lumen Christi TV boosts expansion plans
By Neta Nwosu
The Board of Trustees and National Executives of the Catholic Women Organisation, Nigeria (CWON) and team of Lumen Christi Catholic Television Network, rose from a courtesy visit meeting on Thursday, declaring mutual support for collaboration towards enhancing evangelization in Nigeria, at the world Catholic Television corporate office in Lagos. Throughout the world, clergy and lay faithful are working hard to accomplish the great task ‘to make disciples of all nations.
’ Dame Mary Asibi Gonsum, President, Catholic Women Organisation, Nigeria recently led a high-ranking team of officials comprising Rev. Fr. Benedict Okike, National Chaplain; Rev. Sr. Mary Pia Adesanya, OP, Nation al Sister Adviser; Dame Victoria Akran, Chairman, Board of Trustees, and a host of other National Executives of CWON on a courtesy visit to the Chairman and Founder of Lumen Christi Catholic Television Network, Sir (Prince) Soji Robert Olagunju, to familiarise CWON with the now global first African Catholic Television Network, and also solicit collaboration, to further accomplish the organisational goals of improving the spiritual lives of its members. “We have come here to solicit for your support and work together with you, so that we can collectively achieve our evangeliation tasks. Evangelisation is our core mission as Catholic Women of Nigeria; we also plead with you to support our organisation communication wise.
“We have a boys’ secondary school. As mothers, we felt we have to be part of the life of our boys, the boy child and by so doing, we the women have embarked on a pet project, Cor Mariae Boys Boarding School in Abuja. You might ask why the boy and not the girl, we already have a girls’ school, more so, there are so many girls’ schools, and we felt if we are training our girls, who are those that will keep the girls when the boys are not well brought up. And so, we felt, ‘okay let’s groom the boys, as well, so that they can take care of our daughters.’ The school is in its third year. By the grace of God, we will graduate the first junior secondary school students in August next year.
And we say thank God for that achievement. And we also wish to ask you if there’s any way you can support us so that collectively we can see how we will groom these boys with the fear of the Lord and to grow them as men after God’s own heart. You are a father; you know what it takes to groom a child in that aspect, so you can as well join us, let’s put our heads together and bring them up in the way of the Lord.” The National Chaplain and Sister Adviser of CWON applauded Sir Olagunju for embarking on a selfless multimillion naira Catholic cable television that has in no some measures upped evangelization across the world. Rev. Fr. Okike said, “It’s a joy to come to this place.
During the first African synod one of the things they emphasised was the mass media, communication, because the Church lacks it especially at that very time. How do we evangelise through the mass media? They asked. But today, it is a reality in this place. Some Dioceses have tried to produce newspapers, radio houses or television stations, but not in this magnitude. You took a very bold step to establish this type of media outfit just for evangelisation and every person around the country enjoys this evangelising mission which you have taken upon yourself to give to the masses and beyond Nigeria too. Because media is the in-thing today even with our telephone we enjoy communication, we can’t thank you enough. That’s precisely why we have decided to come, so that also our activities can also benefit from your broadcast media.
People also need to know more about the Catholic Women Organisation Nigeria and its range of programmes.” In same vein, Rev. Sr. Adesanya stated, “I really need to say a special thank you to you for this project. A capital intensive project, I remember that COVID-19 pandemic held me in Lagos, and for months, you were transmitting Masses and so many other spiritual programmes. I was very proud. A project that started in a little way has grown to this great extent, let me say carrying Jesus to so many homes because we couldn’t move out and this is why coming here today, I was so, so happy that I said I need to say this to you, kudos for the good job well done. “And sincerely my dear mothers, I want to make an appeal to all Catholics, we need to support what’s good, organisations need to come here to advertise their products and to do a lot of things.
This is our own, joining hands together we can do so much for this evangelisation that we are really talking about. I was happy in the car when some mothers were saying that is the only station they watch. We have a hospital in Ibadan; honestly this is the only station we watch in the hospital because it is a Catholic station. Once again thank you so much for this selfless task, we will continue to pray for you that you go higher than what you have here because it is something that is really worth it. We want to carry the word of God to ends of the earth, to homes, to everywhere; it’s only through the media we can accomplish all that.” Dame Akran joined others to appreciate the enormous works of Sir Olagunju transmission of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to doorsteps of Christians across the world.
She threw more light on his personality. “I join others to thank God for your life and for the beautiful thing you are doing in the Catholic world, we cannot but just continue to pray for you. You know whatever anybody does for the good of the Church never goes unnoticed. Thanks. He is a Knight of St. Gregory the Great and deeply committed to education of children. He runs a school right through the grades – crèche, primary, secondary, up; you can see the Catholic man is also a holistic man. He knows how intensive running a school is and I’m sure he would support us maximally.” Respond, Sir Olagunju accepted to collaborate with CWON. “We will collaborate with you. Be rest assured of Lumen Christi assisting and collaborating with you as much as possible.
What you are doing here is also evangelisation. The Church has now given the laity the mandate. If you say the Rev. Frs, the Rev. Srs are there; it is their duty, we would be wasting our time because we are supposed to complement their efforts. I thought I could be a Priest then but then when it didn’t happen, I found myself here. What we are also doing, is to ensure that their works are complemented as much as possible because for a Priest in a particular Parish, the best he can do is to talk to those people at Mass at that particular time but if we are opportune to have recorded the homily of that particular mass it becomes easier for us to disseminate across the world because we are seen across the world not just Africa alone. “Before it was just within Africa but now you can view Lumen Christi Catholic TV wherever you are across the world.
We are already working on GOTV but for the fact that they are having constraints regarding expanding their own network, we would have been there by last year but they have reassured us that once they are up and running we would be among the first they would consider, so I want to believe them. For Startimes we have been test running at Ibadan for the past five months, now all things been equal before the end of December this year we soon go national. “Startimes is cheap, it’s N900 thereabout. And the bulk of those that we call Catholics are not in the wealthy category, let’s be honest with ourselves. In fact to about 90 per cent of Catholics, N900 is still a lot of money. And of course we are in collaboration with EWTN just that the collaboration is to the extent that whatever we feel will be relevant to us in Africa that is what we take from them, we don’t take everything because at times when they talk to even understand or comprehend will be a problem because of their diction. You are welcome to Lumen Christi. I must thank you for coming. I can assure you that we will collaborate as much as possible since we are working within the same vineyard. It’s just one vineyard; it’s very large but it ‘s just one vineyard for Christ Jesus.”