..Coming to celebrate birth of Jesus Christ in Church makes me happy – Sheik Rufai’
By Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
As the world celebrates Christmas day which marks the Birth of Jesus Christ, over Five hundred thousand Muslims from across seven northern States of Nigeria and FCT Abuja, joined their Christian counterparts in the celebration at a Church in Kaduna with the aims of promoting peace, love and religion tolerance.
Speaking, the General Overseer of Christ Evangelical and Life lntervention Ministry, Sabon Tasha Kaduna Pastor Yohanna Buru expressed satisfaction over the large turnout of Muslim Imams and youths from many northern states of Nigeria to attend the 2021 Christmas Services.
He said, despite security challenges bedeviling peace and stability in the 19 northern states of Nigeria, and out break of Omicron variant of Covid 19, as well as high cost of transportation, thousands of muslims attended this year’s Christmas morning services with the aims of strengthening good relationship, better understanding, love and religious tolerance.
According to Pastor Buru, this year 2021 marks the 10th year the church has been hosting Muslims for Christmas celebrations.
Pastor Buru also stated that, last year, the number of Muslims that attended the church services out numbered the Christians, and this year also many muslims attended the Church Services.
“So many Muslims from Kaduna, Kano, Zamfara, Kastina, Niger states and Abuja joined us at today’s Christmas service to promote peace and unity, we have counted them one by one and got 525 muslim that heard today’s sermon.
The cleric said, all the Muslims that attended the christmas service are from all Islamic sect which included Tijjaniya, Shiiat, kadriyya and sunni.
He said “We must remembered that we are created by One God, and we are the children of Adams and eve, and we both have our holy scriptures (Bible&Qur’an) from One God which guided us on how to live in peace and harmony with each other”, he said.
Buru expressed also worry over increase insecurity, daily Bloodshed , banditry, kidnapping, attacks and ethno-religion killings across the north which affected the region in terms of education, agriculture, economy, and all sectors of human development.
He added that the outbreak of ethno-religious crises in some parts of the northern region have caused serious set back to peace, stability and other sector of development, and hence the need for both Muslims and Christians to live in peace and harmony to make the region good again.
While he prayed to almighty God to bring to an end to the continuous killing of innocent citizens along high ways and in villages, he appreciated the efforts of states and federal governments for the deployment of security in some troubled areas.
The Man of God prayed for Nigerian Military ,Police, and other Volunteer para-military toward the success in all their peace mission operation across the world.
Buru said, the Church cannot forget the contribution of Muslim women Hajiya Ramatu Tijjani for the massive support to the widows and orphans.
Responding, one of the Muslims scholar, Sheik Ahmed Rufai said, this is not their first time of coming to celebrate Christmas with his friends in the Church.
He said, every Muslims world wide respected Jesus Christ, and coming to the Church to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ makes him happy”, he said, adding that during the birth of Prophet mohammed, (SAW), Pastor Buru usually comes to their Mosques and celebrate the birth of the prophet with them.
He thanked the Church for the free meal and other gifts which the Pastor shares to all the Muslims that attended the Church Services.
He noted that coming to Church and to celebrate Christmas doesn’t make him a Christian but to strengthening Christian and Muslim relationship for peace and unity among different faith base organizations
Similarly, The district head of Kurmin Mashi Kaduna, Alhaji Rabo Abdullahi, Kurmin mashi, Sabon layi, said, he was happy to see the number of Muslim youths and Imams that attended the Christmas service.
He said, it is importance for Muslims and Christians to always live together in peace and harmony.
Another Muslims woman Hajiya sumayya Gali, said, they attended the Church services because Pastor Buru usually bring some of his Church members to celebrate Maulud with them.
She also prayed to almighty God to bring to an end to the spread of Covid-19, while calling on both Muslims and Christians to pray for peace and unity of the nation.