A professor of Religious Ethics, Inter-religious, Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Jacob Ayantayo, has said that there is a need for change in certain practices in the church to make the church go along and contribute to the success of the change agenda being prosecuted by the Federal Government.
Ayantayo said the church was not left out in undesirable practices that stifled development of the country and about which change is desired.
He stated this when he delivered a lecture entitled: “Standing Up from the Fence: The Onus on Theological Institution to Drive Change Agenda Mission In Nigeria,” at the 58th graduation ceremony of United Missionary Church Africa Theological College in Ilorin in Kwara State.
The don, who said there was institutionalised corruption in the country, explained that corruption was characterised by time wasting, environmental pollution, idleness, laziness, materialism, commercialisation of religion, favouritism, nepotism, falsehood, manipulation, cheating and injustice.
He said like it happened in the country, generally wastage of resources and time was witnessed in many churches to the detriment of the welfare of the congregation and economic growth of the nation.
“Nigeria is a place where both material and non-material resources are wasted with no ignominy in both private and public places. In many religious centres, so much of what could be described as hard-earned resources are voted to building religious centres, camps, colonies and castes which have no direct economic values for the congregation.
Ayantayo said that it was a wrong practice to make members of the congregation spend, in the church, so many hours that would include the productive part of time they ought to have used to do something producctive capable of imrpoving their standard of living.
The provost of the college, Dr Olusegun Olawoyin, while congratulating the graduating students, who completed programmes in certificate in Theology; Diploma in Theology; Diploma in Church Music; Bachelor of Theology; Master of Divinity; Master of Arts in Theological Studies; Master of Theology and Doctor of Ministry, admonished them to “drive for true change in Nigeria.”