Fr. Ejike Mbaka’s Adoration Ministry turns into a chaplaincy under the full supervision of the Catholic Diocese of Enugu. It had hitherto operated as a quasi-Parish with interest in multibillion-Naira businesses.
The chaplaincy will still be led by Fr. Mbaka, the founder and hitherto spiritual director.
Enugu Metro learnt that the Bishop, Most Rev. Callistus Onaga, has announced that, as a fully Catholic-owned institution, he reserves the right to appoint a new chaplain and assistants for Adoration Ministry.
A chaplaincy is a special purpose vehicle that the church uses to advance teaching, healing and adoration aspects of evangelization.
We learnt that Bishop Onaga issued extensive set of rules and directives that must guide Adoration Ministry’s operation going forward.
Our checks show that acceptance of the Ministry’s re-designation as a chaplaincy is one of the conditions for reopening the Ministry.
Father Mbaka, hitherto spiritual director and parish priest, shut down the Ministry and proceeded on a one-month reflection last month.
We however learnt that he was ordered to proceed on the retreat to save him and the Church from the embarrassment suffered over his dalliance with the Nigerian Presidency.
Mbaka’s Adoration Ministry has hitherto operated as a quasi-parish with extended interests in privately held multi-billion Naira businesses.
Enugu Metro was told that Bishop Onaga is however more focused on getting the Adoration Ministry to operate in accordance with Catholic Canon Law.
The goal, we learnt, is “to safeguard the integrity of the church and to forestall future abuses” in Adoration Ministry.
Father Mbaka, we learnt, was asked to exercise greater discipline on matters of “the ministry of the word, sacraments, sacramentals and worship of God.”
He was told to steer clear of politics going forward as the Church’s law expressly forbids priests from taking part in any form of partisan politics.
The Bishop, we learnt, admonished him to avoid partisan politics “either by way of active engagement or by prophetic naming of candidates for positions of power.”
Chaplaincies were also told that it is not right to seek to “harm illegitimately the good reputation which a person possesses” or to violate any person’s right to privacy.
The Bishop emphasized that chaplaincies must “remain catholic in its life and teaching,” avoid creating a cult of personality, and remain focused on “the blessed sacrament as the Centre of worship.”
We understand that Fr. Mbaka was asked to “use dialogue and prayer rather than revenge or exchange of words” to deal with his challenges and difficulties.
Among other directives are to bring back the teaching of Catechism and to disallow a non-Catholic from playing a role in the Ministry’s liturgy.
Above all, Mbaka was reminded that “efforts must be made to nourish the spiritual and moral life of the attendees and not just their mundane desires.”