Mbaise nation is one of the most blessed and famous people in Igbo land, the mere mention of Mbaise arouse curiosity anywhere in the world. In the eyes of the uninformed school of thought , they might be termed controversial when it comes to their high level of wisdom and marriage rites. What they Igbos are to Nigeria , is what the Mbaise nation is to the Igbo race. With a land area of 623km2 viable arable land and level topography. Mbaise people are known around the world for their unique wisdom, which they have always leveraged on to make a name for themselves in every sector of life.
Mbaise people are never hidden in any field of human Endeavour be it politics, entertainment, education, sports, religion, cultures and tradition ,business, law, medicine etc. They always have the best these sectors can offer, From the entertainment sector you have the likes of Okey Bakassi, Kanayo O Kanayo, Genevive Nnaji, Victor Osuagwu, Eucharia Anunobi, Rita Dominic, .
In education, Professor viola Onwuliri, Professor Ahaneku Vice chancellor Nnamdi Azikiwe University , politics Emeka Ihedioha former Deputy Speaker Federal House of Representative, Sen Chris Anyanwu , Business Mr Frank Nneji founder ABC Transport , law Mike Ahamba SAN, sports Dr Patrick Ekeji former Director General National Sport Council and a whole lot of prominent sons and daughters both in Nigeria and in the Diaspora.
Mbaise is the strong hold of the roman catholic church which is one the most famous orders in the catholic hierarchy. It has over 500 ordained priests of the Roman Catholic Order in different vocations , same goes to the reverened sisters and other strata of the religious assembly. They are called the Ireland of Africa because of how travelled their priests and religious spread across the world in the course of the spiritual work and service to humanity.
Unfortunately this retinue of religious population which should have been a light and a source of salvation to the people has turned out to be the object of caricature for Mbaise Nation in particular and the larger society especially in the religious circle due to their evil work ‘’ religiouspreneurship’’
‘’Religiouspreneurs are business minded individuals who uses the name of religion to enrich themselves, achieve their selfish interests and keep their victims -the congregations disillusioned, yet still pretend to be the pious and saints of modern times’’
The length and breadth of Mbaise land has over 81 autonomous communities and these autonomous communities has more than 1000 thousand religious houses (churches) both from the orthodox and Pentecostal blocks, yet they have not made positive impact in the spiritual growth, salvation and empowerment of the average Mbaise man either as congregationist or in the circular society. This altitude exhibited by these religiouspreneurs makes it look like the religious houses are now religious empire, instead of a place of worship which people are meant to believe.
My focus is on the orthox religiouspreneurs , there has been a buzz for over the three years now over the leadership tussle in the biggest orthox religious house located at Ahiara Mbaise land, over the rejection of an ordained bishop by the indigenous religiouspreneurs with a flimsy excuse of him not coming from Mbaise land. This has constantly attracted the attention of all well known media houses in Nigeria, which now portray the Mbaise people as segregationists no thanks to these ‘’ religiouspreneurs’’
The question is this? Is the church not supposed to belong to God, who never discriminate nor blesses people according to their place of birth or back ground.
The holy book made us to understand that our major aim here is to serve the true Jehovah, spread his message of love and salvation and not to justle for earthly positions and empires. How come these religiouspreneurs forgot their core duties and delve into mundane acts like earthly political and religious positions that ends here on earth forgetting the eternal life that rest in heaven. How come the only message these religiouspreneurs understands is just materialism , hate speech and causing disaffection in a land where they are supposed to lead the pace for peace, progress and unconditional love.
Go to any of the religious houses where these religiouspreneurs are presiding, you keep hearing pay your leavies for this or that, at times they force the entire community to close their palm trees for a period of two months in order to raise money for them. If you as member of their business empire(church) does not have money , your presence cannot be taken serious. They don’t care about evangelism , restitution, true salvation and poverty alleviation of the members whom they should take care of just as Christ did when he was on earth. Their major focus is who takes a particular position, where does he come from and which family and influence does he command.
The fight within themselves is fast degenerating to street wars, where some even see others as not really first class ordained men of God. Nobody dares to talk, lest they attack him or her with everything they have. It is very unfortunate to see priests who are supposed to teach the youths morals, path to salvation, respect to the sacredness of constituted authority. Giving the youths weapons to block the gate of a religious house in order to prevent an ordained bishop to assume duties. They went as far as using casket to block the entrance of the religious house because their preferred candidate was not ordained.
I asked again? Does the church really belong to God or has it turn to religious empire of few men who pretend to be pious and saints of this century. These religiouspreneurs most of them don’t do circular jobs, yet you see them erecting powerful edifices in their fathers houses, having shopping malls here and there. They were meant to live a celibacy life, yet you keep hearing allegations of fathering children out of wedlock on their head. One leg in the religious house , the other in the circular cultures and traditions.
They keep forcing the people to donate monies which nobody accounts, every season must have a project that requires money. But they don’t bother about the minds of the members who are fade up with all their manipulations. They went as far as threatening their members that whoever does not pays his leavies will be abandoned in times of death. The members now focused on paying their earthly debts to attracts crowds on their burial day thereby forgetting to work on their salvations, peace to one another, impactful live that posterity would have remembered them. If a member constantly give in to their financial manipulations, they select that member to be a knight or make him a member of the parish council which is a rubber stamp leadership of the church controlled by the same religiouspreneurs.
In this hard times of economic recession and high rate of unemployment, if a lucky mother happens to have two of her children working with a mouth watering pay cheque in the city. That mother has automatically becomes an’’ Ezinne ‘’or ‘’Diamond mother’’ depending on the class of her children. Nobody bothers to check the woman’s character and spiritual activeness in propagating the gospel and even her relationship with her fellow women in the community. Just because her children will come that day and drop some few thousands of naira. It got me perplexed on what happens to salvation and good spiritual relationship in Mbaise
These religiouspreneurs who are driving away an ordained bishop away from their land, forgot that they have 60% of their indigenous religious priest outside Mbaise land. Their illustrious son is even a vice chancellor in the same city where the rejected an ordained bishop . Moreover, these are all Igbo sons and daughters that’s the path that made me cried most. What do we tell the outside world of our personality as Igbo people. I don’t believe in religion because it is a man- made manipulations to divert gullible followers attention of their real motive that’s story for another day.
As a strong advocate of progress and development of the Igbo heritage, it pricks my heart when a brother disdain a fellow brother all in the name of alien religion. And this has giving room for advanced hyperteck and digital religiouspreneurs to use the opportunity to present themselves as the 21st century Joshuas and messiahs of Mbaise people who has no choice other than to follow them since their religious power house is on fire. This digital version of religiouspreneurs has swag and knows best how to play on the people’s emotions brandishing all kinds slogans, and mantras to keep their followers glued to their crafts.
They have all kinds of materials to entertain and thrill their followers. They have outsmarted the old block of religiouspreneurs who are more concerned about power, and supremacy . They digital religiouspreneurs really understand the weak points of their members and they are giving it to them without any iota of space. They entire Mbaise town is now agog of spiritual frenzy no thanks to both the ancient and modern religiouspreneurs.
But to you all religiouspreneurs its time you turn from your evil ways and be on the path of repentance and true healing of Mbaise land both spiritually and empowering the people.
The Dalai Lama of Tibet said’’ if you cannot help people solve their problem, don’t add to it. ‘’
As religious people , if you cannot win souls and direct them to Christ, then don’t make them sworn enemies of themselves and object of mockery before the larger world.