The retired Catholic Archbishop of Abuja and former President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Cardinal John Onaiyekan, has said lots of Nigerians need psychological attention because of the problems facing the country.
According to Onaiyekan, Nigerians are battling socio-economic crises and depression as never before and require the Church to step in to avoid a total breakdown of the fabric of the nation.
Onaiyekan made the remarks in Abuja during the foundation laying ceremony of the Building and Remodeling of the Dominic Cardinal Ignatius Ekandem Villa which houses the Gaudium et Spe Institute, Asokoro Abuja.
The Abuja Catholic Arch. Bishop, Kaigama Ignatius performed the foundation laying ceremony of the building which would cost the Catholic Community about N1.6 billion.
Speaking with newsmen, Onaiyekan said Nigerians are going through lots of challenges and difficulties beyond spiritual, health, educational, and physical problems which had over time engaged the attention of the Church.
According to him:” People are facing difficulties, and there are many problems in our country now, so beyond spiritual support, we need to provide psychological support for the people.
“The church has always impacted the lives of the people in many ways, we build schools to educate children and adults, health facilities to give physical treatment in hospitals, even the major job we do as religious leaders, we deal with the spiritual problem of the people.
“This particular project is beyond, health, education, spiritual and physical because it is also for psycho-spiritual work to help people who do not have only spiritual problems but have psycho problems.”
Onaiyekan explained the project when completed would take care of people with various social challenges as the Catholic Community and Church had trained lots of people to attend to such needs.
Kaigama commended the project Committee headed by Senator Ndoma Egba for their commitment so far, saying the building was in honour of the late Dominic Cardinal Ekandem who devoted his life to the services of the people.
“We are hoping by the grace of God and generosity of good-spirited people to erect this building in honour of his eminence, the Late Dominic Cardinal Ekandem.
“This was where he was to live before he died. This place is being transformed into a spiritual home., where people can come and get help, do retreat and prayers, and engage in psychotherapy, counseling, amongst others,” Kaigama said.