Sacred Heart Cath Church Apapa was created as a Parish in 1966. The current Parish Priest is Rev Fr Osbert Egbe (sma). Sacred Heart Catholic Church (SHCC), Apapa was created as a Parish in 1966.
Very Rev. Fr. Young, (SMA), the then Vicar General and late Rev Fr Breden Hanniffy, (SMA) were appointed by His Grace, the late Most Rev. Dr. J.K. Aggey, then Archbishop of Lagos, to open a Parish in Apapa in January 1966. By the courtesy of late Rev Monsignor J. Sadiku, they were based at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Ajegunle. They moved into Apapa and the construction of the parish house with a hall for Holy Mass started immediately. By December of 1966 the house was ready. The first Holy Mass was celebrated in the Hall, midnight of December 1966. The civil war of 1967 slowed down the project. Soon after the civil war in 1971 the pilling works for the new church began. Activities went on and the congregation grew. Three Harvest Thanksgiving and Bazaars were held and as they were found wanting in all respects, the idea was dropped and direct giving was introduced instead. In 1973, the foundation stone of the new church was laid by the Most Rev Dr. Anthony Olubunmi Okogie, Archbishop of the Metropolitan See of Lagos. On 6th May, 1973, the Archbishop Most Rev. Dr. Okogie administered his first confirmation in this parish. The parishioners built the church from own resources. In October, 1980, His Grace, the Most Rev Dr Anthony Olubunmi Okogie solemnly dedicated the magnificent edifice to the greater honour and glory of God. The late Most Rev Dr. J. K. Aggey administered the first confirmation here in May 1968. From his appointment in 1966 to his eventual retirement, it was hard work for Father Hanniffy in the parish. In addition to his pastoral duties, he also had his prison ad seafarers work. All of this took its toll and for the last twenty years of his life, while here at SHCC, he was in poor health. He retired to the SMA house, Cork, Ireland and he died there on the 8th of November 1994 at the age of 72 years. With the retirement of Father Hanniffy, the post of Parish Priest was now open to be filled. The vacant post was offered to Rev. John Burke who moved into the parish on the 29th of April 1993. part of the reason for posting him to SHCC was its central location for the setting up and for the day to day running of the Ecclesiastical Tribunal. Fr Burke was the Chaplain of the Association of Marriage Advisory Service in the ecclesiastical province of Lagos. He died in the year 2006. The Parish has a well established Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) and a Laity Council. The councils participate actively in all the activities at the Archdiocesan level. The current Parish Priest is Rev Fr Osbert Egbe (sma), assisted by Rev Fr Marc Nkulu (sma).
Mission: As a Community, we should strive to hold the Eucharist as the Centre of our Christian Faith and Worship.
Operating as usual
Beloved in Christ, today the Holy Mother Church celebrates the Solemnity of Jesus the Universal King
The liturgy presents to us the Shepherd who seeks out each, knows each by name; heals and bandages the wounded, and strengthens the entire flock.
In the same vein, Christ the King presents to us through the Gospel, the image of love and service of others.
Jesus reminds us of the anawim (the poor), those who rely only on God because they have nothing and are considered by some of us as nothing.
This is to teach us that Christ is met in the most unlikely and unexpected people in the society.
Beloved, the Solemnity of today celebrates God's love and justice, which we also are called to emulate.
Do you show love and mercy to your neighbour, especially the poor ones?
As you journey into the new week, do well to reflect on the reality that: judgement will be based on mercy and love shown to our neighbour.
Quote of the Day
Daily Quote from the early church fathers: The home of sanctity, by Augustine of Hippo, 354-430 A.D.
"God does not want his temple to be a trader's lodge but the home of sanctity. He does not preserve the practice of the priestly ministry by the dishonest duty of religion but by voluntary obedience. Consider what the Lord's actions impose on you as an example of living... He taught in general that worldly transactions must be absent from the temple, but he drove out the money changers in particular. Who are the money changers, if not those who seek profit from the Lord's money and cannot distinguish between good and evil? Holy Scripture is the Lord's money." (excerpt from EXPOSITION OF THE GOSPEL OF LUKE 9.17-18)
Psalm of the Day
14 In the way of your testimonies I delight as much as in all riches.
24 Your testimonies are my delight, they are my counselors.
72 The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.
103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
111 Your testimonies are my heritage for ever; yes, they are the joy of my heart.
131 With open mouth I pant, because I long for your commandments.
Prayer of the Day
"Lord Jesus, you open wide the door of your house and you bid us to enter confidently that we may worship you in spirit and truth. Help me to draw near to you with gratitude and joy for your great mercy. May I always revere your word and give you acceptable praise and worship."
Question of the Day
Do you allow God's word to transform you in his way of love and holiness?
The Lord wants to share his holiness with us
If we approach God's word with a humble attentive heart and with a willingness to be taught by the Lord, then we are in a good place to allow God's word to change and transform us in the likeness of Christ. The Lord wants to teach us his ways so that we may grow in holiness. The Lord both instructs and disciplines us in love to lead us from the error of our sinful ways to his truth and justice. "God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness" (Hebrews 12:10). The Lord calls us to be a holy people who worship him with reverence and gratitude for his great mercy and kindness towards us.
The people were hungry for the word of God
In justification for his audacious action Jesus quotes from the prophets Isaiah (Isaiah 56:7) and Jeremiah (Jeremiah 7:11). His act of judgment aims to purify the worship of God's people and to discipline their erring ways. Despite the objections of the religious leaders, no doubt because Jesus was usurping their authority in the house of God, the people who listened to Jesus teaching daily in the temple regarded him with great awe and respect. Luke tells us that "they hung upon Jesus' words"(Luke 19:48). How hungry are you for God's word?
Jesus honors the Father's house of prayer by cleansing it of unholy practices
In this incident we see Jesus' startling and swift action in cleansing the temple of those who were using it to exploit the worshipers of God. The money changers took advantage of the poor and forced them to pay many times more than was right - in the house of God no less! Their robbery of the poor was not only dishonoring to God but unjust toward their neighbor.
[11/20/20] Meditation: Why did Jesus drive out the money changers in the temple at Jerusalem? Was he upset with their greediness? This is the only incident in the Gospels where we see Jesus using physical force. Jesus went to Jerusalem, knowing he would meet certain death on the cross, but victory as well for our sake. His act of judgment in the temple is meant to be a prophetic sign and warning to the people that God takes our worship very seriously.
Daily Reading & Meditation
Friday (November 20): All the people hung upon his words
Scripture: Luke 19:45-48
45 And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, 46 saying to them, "It is written, `My house shall be a house of prayer'; but you have made it a den of robbers." 47 And he was teaching daily in the temple. The chief priests and the scribes and the principal men of the people sought to destroy him; 48 but they did not find anything they could do, for all the people hung upon his words.
Quote of the Day
Daily Quote from the early church fathers: Jesus fulfills the beatitude for those who weep, by Origen of Alexandria (185-254 AD)
"When our Lord and Savior approached Jerusalem, he saw the city and wept... By his example, Jesus confirms all the Beatitudes that he speaks in the Gospel. By his own witness, he confirms what he teaches. 'Blessed are the meek,' he says. He says something similar to this of himself: 'Learn from me, for I am meek.' 'Blessed are the peacemakers.' What other man brought as much peace as my Lord Jesus, who 'is our peace,' who 'dissolves hostility' and 'destroys it in his own flesh' (Ephesians 2:14-15). 'Blessed are those who suffer persecution because of justice.'
"No one suffered such persecution because of justice as did the Lord Jesus, who was crucified for our sins. The Lord therefore exhibited all the Beatitudes in himself. For the sake of this likeness, he wept, because of what he said, 'Blessed are those who weep,' to lay the foundations for this beatitude as well. He wept for Jerusalem and said,'If only you had known on that day what meant peace for you! But now it is hidden from your eyes,' and the rest, to the point where he says, 'Because you did not know the time of your visitation'" (excerpt from HOMILY ON THE GOSPEL OF LUKE 38.1-2)
Psalm of the Day
Psalm 50:1-2,5-6, 23
1 The Mighty One, God the LORD, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.
2 Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God shines forth.
5 "Gather to me my faithful ones, who made a covenant with me by sacrifice!"
6 The heavens declare his righteousness, for God himself is judge!
14 Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and pay your vows to the Most High;
15 and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me."
Prayer of the Day
"Lord Jesus, you have visited and redeemed your people. May I not miss the grace of your visitation today as you move to bring your people into greater righteousness and holiness of life. Purify my heart and mind that I may understand your ways and conform my life more fully to your will."
Question of the Day
Do you accept the grace to turn away from sin and to walk in God's way of peace and holiness?
God judges, pardons, heals, and restores us to new life
When God visits his people he comes to establish peace and justice by rooting out our enemies - the world (which stands in opposition to God), the flesh (our own sinful cravings and inordinate desires), and the devil (who is Satan, the father of lies and a murderer from the beginning - John 8:44) who enslave us to fear and pride, rebellion and hatred, envy and covetousness, strife and violence, and every form of evil and wrong-doing. That is why God both judges and purifies his people - to lead us from our sinful ways to his way of justice, peace, love, and holiness. God actively works among his people to teach us his ways and to save us from the destruction of our own pride and sin and from Satan's snares and lies.
Are God's judgments unjust or unloving? Scripture tells us that "when God's judgments are revealed in the earth, the inhabitants of the world learn righteousness" (Isaiah 26:9). To pronounce judgment on sin is much less harsh than what will happen if those who sin are not warned to repent. The Lord in his mercy gives us grace and time to turn away from sin, but that time is right now. If we delay, even for a moment, we may discover that grace has passed us by and our time is up.
Jesus is our only hope - the only one who can save us and the world
Jesus' entrance into Jerusalem was a gracious visitation of God's anointed Son and King to his holy city. Jerusalem's lack of faith and rejection of the Messiah, however, leads to its eventual downfall and destruction by the Romans in 70 A.D. Jesus' lamentation and prophecy echoes the lamentation of Jeremiah who prophesied the first destruction of Jerusalem and its temple. Jeremiah's prayer of lamentation offered a prophetic word of hope, deliverance, and restoration:
"But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies are new every morning ...For the Lord will not cast off for ever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love for he does not willingly afflict or grieve the sons of men" (Lamentations 3:21-22, 31-32).
Jesus is the hope of the world because he is the only one who can truly reconcile us with God and with one another. Through his death and resurrection Jesus breaks down the walls of hostility and division by reconciling us with God. He gives us his Holy Spirit both to purify us and restore us as a holy people of God. Through Jesus Christ we become living temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). God has visited his people in the past and he continues to visit us through the gift and working of his Holy Spirit. Do you recognize God's gracious visitation of healing and restoration today?
Tears of mourning and sorrow over sin and refusal to believe in God
When Jesus approached Jerusalem and saw the multitude of homes surrounding the holy temple, he wept over it because it inhabitants did not "know the things that make for peace" (Luke 19:42). As he poured out his heart to the Father in heaven, Jesus shed tears of sorrow, grief, and mourning for his people.He knew that he would soon pour out his blood for the people of Jerusalem and for the whole world as well.
Why does Jesus weep and lament over the city of Jerusalem? Throughout its history, many of the rulers and inhabitants - because of their pride and unbelief - had rejected the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. Now they refuse to listen to Jesus who comes as their Messiah - whom God has anointed to be their Savior and Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6).
Meditation: What enables us to live in peace and harmony with our families, neighbors, local communities, and the wider community of peoples and nations? The Father in heaven sent his only begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to reconcile us with God and to unite us with one another in a bond of peace and mutual love.
Jesus' earthly ministry centers and culminates in Jerusalem, which Scripture describes as the holy city, the throne of the Lord (Jeremiah 3:17);and the place which God chose for his name to dwell there (1 Kings 11:13; 2 Kings 21:4; 2 Kings 23:27); and the holy mountain upon which God has set his king (Psalm 2:6). Jerusalem derives its name from the word "salem" which mean "peace". The temple in Jerusalem was a constant reminder to the people of God's presence with them.
Daily Reading & Meditation
Thursday (November 19): Know the time of your visitation
Scripture: Luke 19:41-44
41 And when he drew near and saw the city he wept over it, 42 saying, "Would that even today you knew the things that make for peace! But now they are hid from your eyes. 43 For the days shall come upon you, when your enemies will cast up a bank about you and surround you, and hem you in on every side, 44 and dash you to the ground, you and your children within you, and they will not leave one stone upon another in you; because you did not know the time of your visitation."
"Have your minds ready for action. Keep alert, and set your hope completely on the blessing which will be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. Be obedient to God, and do not allow your lives to be shaped by those desires you had when you were still ignorant." (1 Pet 1:13-14)
For your meditation today. God bless and keep you!
Quote of the Day
Daily Quote from the early church fathers: Talents are divine gifts given to the faithful, by Cyril of Alexandria (376-444 AD)
"To those who believe in him, the Savior distributes a variety of divine gifts. We affirm that this is the meaning of the talent. Truly great is the difference between those who receive the talents and those who have even completely denied his kingdom. They are rebels that throw off the yoke of his scepter, while the others are endowed with the glory of serving him. As faithful servants, therefore, they are entrusted with their Lord's wealth. They gain something by doing business. They earn the praises due to faithful service, and they are considered worthy of eternal honors." (excerpt from COMMENTARY ON LUKE, HOMILY 129)
Psalm of the Day
1 Hear a just cause, O LORD; attend to my cry! Give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit!
5 My steps have held fast to your paths, my feet have not slipped.
6 I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me, hear my words.
7 Wondrously show your steadfast love, O savior of those who seek refuge from their adversaries at your right hand.
8 Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings.
15 As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with beholding your form.
Prayer of the Day
"Lord Jesus, be the ruler of my heart and mind and the master of my home and goods. Fill me with a generous and wise spirit that I may use the gifts, talents, time, and resources you give me for your glory and your kingdom."
Question of the Day
Do you trust in God's grace to make good use of the gifts and talents he has given you?
The Lord expects us to be good stewards of the gifts and graces he gives us
There is an important lesson here for us. No one can stand still for long in the Christian life. We either get more or we lose what we have. We either advance towards God or we slip back. Do you seek to serve God with the gifts, talents, and graces he has given to you?
The Lord Jesus offers us a kingdom of justice, love, and peace and he calls us to live as citizens of this kingdom where he rules as Lord and Master. Through his atoning death on the cross and through his resurrection victory, Jesus frees us from a kingdom of darkness where sin and Satan reign. Through the power of the Holy Spirit the Lord gives us freedom to live as his servants and to lay down our lives in loving service of our neighbors (Galatians 5:1,13).
The Lord rewards those who faithfully use their gifts and talents for doing good by giving them more
What do coins and the law of economics have to do with the kingdom of God? The Lord entrusts the subjects of his kingdom with gifts and graces and he gives his subjects the freedom to use them as they think best. With each gift and talent, God gives sufficient means (grace and wisdom) for using them in a fitting way. As the parable of the talents shows, God abhors indifference and an attitude that says it's not worth trying. God honors those who use their talents and gifts for doing good. Those who are faithful with even a little are entrusted with more! But those who neglect or squander what God has entrusted to them will lose what they have.
Parable of the talents
Jesus speaks to their longing for a new kingdom in the parable of a nobleman who went away to receive a kingdom. The parable reveals something important about how God works his plan and purpose with his people. The parable speaks first of the king's trust in his subjects. While he goes away he leaves them with his money to use as they think best. While there were no strings attached, this was obviously a test to see if the Master's workers would be industrious and reliable in their use of the money entrusted to them. The master rewards those who are industrious and faithful and he punishes those who sit by idly and who do nothing with his money.
The essence of the parable seems to lie in the servants' conception of responsibility. Each servant entrusted with the master's money was faithful up to a certain point. The servant who buried the master's money was irresponsible. One can bury seeds in the ground and expect them to become productive because they obey natural laws. Coins, however, do not obey natural laws. They obey economic laws and become productive in circulation. The master expected his servants to be productive in the use of his money.
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