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Augustinians and the move for peace

25 Feb 2016, by Rev. Fr. Joel Okojie OSA in Augustinians

It is no longer news for one to hear that the religious crises that almost destroyed the northern part of Nigeria have left the two main religions in Nigeria (Christianity and Islam) suspicious of each other. So many groups and individuals in their own ways have tried to restore that peace and trust that existed among these people before the seed of suspicion and enmity was planted among them; these people once lived as one.

The Augustinians in Nigeria are not left out in the effort to bring about reconciliation and healing to the land. The Province of St. Augustine of Nigeria is so concerned about the ugly development that has divided the people along religious lines. Therefore, the Augustinians not only pray for total restoration of love and trust between these two groups but have taken some practical steps to actualize the needed peace with God’s help. One of them is the establishment of the Peace Model Academy.

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The Peace Model Academy was recently established in Katako, a densely Muslim populated area of Jos, Plateau State. The aim is to bring western education closer to the people and convince everyone that reconciliation, love, forgiveness, trust, and peace are still possible. One of the major tools is to “catch them young” through this academy and convince them that hatred and war cannot guaranty our peace and future. We all need to live in peace with one another.

Currently, the academy is still at the infantry stage with no proper structures but with 90 registered pupils. With just one Christian Child among 90 Muslims, the academy may appear to be an Islamic school but managed by Christians (The Augustinian’s). There is a great collaboration between the Muslim community and the Augustinian Community; I see this as a firm foundation upon which love and trust between Christians and Muslims could be built. It is a humble beginning that may be a mighty instrument in the hands of God to restore peace, trust, and reconciliation between Christians and Muslims.

We pray for the growth of the academy and Rev. Fr. David Aronokhale O.S.A. as he pilots the school’s affairs. We also use this medium to appeal to both Government and Non-Governmental Organizations and individuals for support to fulfill our vision and hope.

Bank details: Augustinian Monastery, Diamond bank 0069591858

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