By Olivia Obijiaku
In an interview with Star Radio Life with Mr. Lyamngee Agir on Saturday, 4th June, 2022, the Executive Secretary of the Resource and Planning Commission of the Catholic Diocese of Makurdi and the Secretary of the Governing Council of the Principle Arm of the Commission, Barr Mike Utsaha (Esq) explained the reason behind the establishment of the commission.
Revealing the Local Ordinary, Bishop Wilfred Chikpa Anagbe’s quest for a stronger joint effort between the clergy and the laity, Barr Utsaha asserted that the move is aimed at ensuring that the faithful across the diocese contribute and benefit from the common pot.
“The Resource and Planning Commission is a resource mobilization platform for the Catholic Diocese of Makurdi”. The scribe intimated. “Resources could be human, material or financial but in the estimation of the bishop, there are resources available within the Church in Makurdi. We have done a lot in terms of mobilizing these resources but it is the desire of the bishop that we have some coordinating mechanism for the mobilization and the allocation of these resources. This is the background for the establishment of the Resource and Planning Commission.”
“There is always corroboration between the laity and the clergy within the Catholic Church, but the bishop desires to enhance a deeper corroboration between the laity and the clergy – that we have some sort of common pool where all parishes can benefit from the resources that are available to the Church. At the deanery level, we have deanery coordinators for each of the eleven deaneries in the diocese. We are moving from the deanery level to the parish level where we are identifying parish representatives. This is a painstaking process that has to be carefully carried out. We are relying on our deans and parish priests.”
“The bishop has carried out series of consultations with very senior priests within and outside the diocese and they were very well received. We are putting in place the adequate structures to make sure that we discharge this responsibility of the bishop. A lot has been done in the diocese but this is to add some kind of flavor to what is going on and to bring some sort of holistic coordinating mechanism. There are four departments Fundraising, Communication, Human Resources and Planning.”
On the challenges encountered so far, the spokesperson pointed to the difficulty in identifying coordinators at the parish level but defended that they are not in a hurry because it takes time for people to also internalize some mechanisms and to identify themselves with them.