We bring you greetings, best wishes and prayerful thoughts in this New Year 2020 from the Anglican Diocese of the Trinity (ADOTT) in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
Mama ADOTT wholeheartedly joins me as your Bishop and Servant Leader to salute all our Suffragan Bishops and Mamas of the ADOTT Regions, the Clergy and their wives, our Chancellor and Diocesan Officials, Lay Ministers and Evangelists, the Knights, our beloved youths and children, our distinguished men, women and friends of ADOTT. Year 2020 is the beginning of the new decade, 2020-2029.
To everyone, particularly, in all ADOTT Churches in Canada, United States of America, and to our beloved brethren far away in our two Churches in Japan, we shout loudly, “Happy New Year,” and “Happy New Decade” in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen!
I declare in the name of the Almighty God that in this New Year and Decade, the Lord will order our steps, inspire our thoughts, direct our actions, unite and establish us for monumental achievements, for signs and wonders, for miracles and uncommon testimonies. We shall operate under open heavens.
God will give us new songs, we shall testify of His greatness and our whole being will praise Him. This year and in the new decade, we shall receive more grace and abundant blessings for multiple accomplishments, remarkable successes in our endeavours, fruitfulness and substantial increase in the work of our hands in Jesus name. Amen!
From the refrain of our Diocesan Anthem, “God is with us, God is with us, Christ our Lord shall reign as King,” we testify and reiterate affirmatively with gratitude to the Almighty God, His abiding presence, supply and sufficiency as clearly evident in many ways and at various instances in our individual life and in the lives of our families, congregations and Diocese in 2019, which was declared the ‘Divine Year of Moving Forward and Joyful Celebrations.’ God was with us all through last year, and indeed Christ continues to reign as King in ADOTT.
In moving forward with joyful celebrations, our faithful and merciful God inspired the House of Bishops of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) to elect four Suffragan Bishops in January 2019 during the annual Bishops retreat at the Ibru Center, Agbara-Oto in Delta State and their consecration was held in July in a grand and colorful service at the Archbishop Vining Memorial Cathedral Church, Ikeja, Lagos.
Consequently, the Diocese has been restructured into five areas, comprising the Area of Emphasis and four Regions. The Suffragan Bishops are settling down to their primary missionary responsibilities of church planting and evangelism in their respective Regions.
Notwithstanding the teething problems, difficulties and challenges, we pray that their ministries would be rewarding, fulfilling, successful and fruitful and that the Regions would grow up to attain, in due course, the status of Dioceses as approved by the authority of the Church of Nigeria. The Lord of Hosts will accomplish it in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen!
We had our own share of losses and pains including the death of a clergy-The Revd. Dapo Edun and other loved ones, ill-health, and so forth. May God console and comfort all our people in their sorrow and pain and grief, and pour the balm of Gilead to heal our wounds and pains in Jesus name.
On the other hand we sincerely appreciate and praise God for His favour, grace, great deeds and the uncountable blessings He bestowed on us, including, good health, travel mercies, provisions, new childbirths, graduations, solemnization of marriages, and for the successful accomplishments of all our programs and activities in the Diocese; so we can together sing joyfully:
“Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let earth hear His voice;
Praise the Lord, Praise the Lord,
Let the people rejoice;
O come to the Father through Jesus the Son
And give Him the glory great things He has done.”
The Lord has done great things for us. In turn, much is expected from us as well to walk humbly with the Lord, show mercy, know and serve God diligently. We are to be faithful witnesses to the Gospel in our teachings, preaching and character. This should be our way of life.
As beneficiary of God’s abundant grace and blessings of moving forward and joyful celebrations in 2019, we are more than ever before enjoined and encouraged by the injunction of the great commission to “……go and make disciples of all nations……..,” (Matt. 28:18-20) and bear witnesses to the Lord Jesus Christ, “in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and to the utmost of the world,” (Acts 1:8) and we are assured of God’s presence always.
Whereas the year 2019 is now gone, we must continue still to be “moving forward and joyful celebrations,” in the New Year 2020. This is because like Apostle Paul said, “Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me.
Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 3:12-14).We must endeavor to be moving forward in our spiritual lifecycle, our career, studies, and all aspects of our human endeavours such that God will be exalted and His name is gloried.
Let us remind ourselves, particularly in ADOTT that, from our inception as a Diocese in 2012, we are evangelists and missionaries, and that we would continue to aspire to pursue our missionary goals and objectives prayerfully with a sense of commitment and purpose, and by the grace of God, to realize our vision for this Diocese. We are assured that “God is with us, God is with us…Christ our Lord shall reign as King.”
Therefore, let us march on in God’s own strength, in His power and might, and authority. As soldiers of Christ, let us damn the consequences of any form of antagonism, powers and principalities in high and low places. Let us shun the devices and diplomacy of hypocrites and “enemies of the Cross of Christ,” (Philippians 3:18-19). We believe that God instructs us especially in ADOTT in this new year and decade as Luke wrote in Acts 13:47, “For so the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have set you as a light to the Gentiles, That you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth.” Let us mobilize ourselves including our youths and children, adults and aged ones for this task. It is imperative that we are all undaunted and resolute to be unstoppable and uncompromising in carrying out this command and mission from God from now until the glory of the Lord covers the earth as the waters cover the sea. With God assuredly being our Hope, Strength and Helper, ADOTT will achieve and accomplish this command and mission in Jesus name.
May the Spirit of the Lord be upon us all in ADOTT, because He has anointed us, “To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent us to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives; And recovery of sight to the blind; To set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD” (Luke 4:18-19). Amen!
As your Servant Leader, and having given our self to prayer and meditation, we have been led by the Holy Spirit into God’s direction and commission for us in the new year and decade. It is in this context that we make the following prophetic pronouncements for ADOTT for the Year 2020:
• Theme: Do the Work of an Evangelist, Fulfil Your Ministry.
• Anchor Statement: But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry, (2 Timothy 4:5)
Fight the good fight…
Fight the good fight With all thy might; Christ is thy Strength and Christ thy Right. Lay hold on life, and it shall be Thy joy and crown eternally.
Faint not nor fear, His arms are near; He changeth not, and thou art dear. Only believe, and thou shalt see That Christ is All in all to thee.
• The Year 2020 is hereby declared, “Divine Year of Peace, Praise and Providence” (DYPPP) in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen!
• The Decade 2020-2029 is hereby declared, “Decade of Pro-Active Evangelism and Missionary Blowout” in the name of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Amen!
• Slogan for the New Decade: For every Evangelist, another Evangelist; for every Church, another Church; every Archdeaconry, another Archdeaconry; every Region, another Region; and for every Diocese another Diocese” in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen!
In conclusion of this message, and borrowing from Paul’s letters to the saints and faithful brethren in Christ in Colossae, we beseech you by the mercies of God that we do not cease to pray in this Diocese for the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) in particular, and all Christian brethren and true compatriots all over the world in the mission of Christ.
Let us pray ceaselessly for our Diocese, Churches, families and friends as well for ourselves, that we may be filled with the knowledge of God’s word in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that we may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing God, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to God’s glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light, (Colossians 1:9-12).
As Paul prayed for the Thessalonians so we pray, “And may the God of peace Himself sanctify, us all completely; and may our whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.” (I Thessalonians 5:23 & 28).
Happy New Year and Happy New Decade.
Your Bishop and Servant-Leader,
The Rt. Revd Amos & Mama Abike Fagbamiye