Ever since the APC unveiled Kashim Shettima as his APC Presidential Running Mate, there has been several controversies regarding the supposed bishops that attended the unveiling event which was held at Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre in Abuja, on Wednesday, July 20, 2022.
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Some say that the clerics are all fakes, while the organizers insists that they are all legitimate Bishops from different Christian churches across the nation. So today we’ll be doing justice to the images shared online from the event and let you use your conscience to deicide if these so called clerics are real or not. We’ll be taking the clarifications given by Fr Kelvin, MSP, a Nigerian priest based in Malawi
Due to the fact that these supposed clergies were hired at fire brigade service, there were tons of lapses at their packaging and presentation, so now we’ll be showing you the difference between what they did and what they were trying to achieve.
The first notable mistake was their dressing, and the colour of their supposed clergy clothes. Their general appearance gave them all away at a glance, clergymen have this way of always looking smart at decent at all times.
Second thing that gave them all away was the colour of their clothes. They all wore random colours to the event, without knowing that real bishops have a certain dress code and colour to wear for every occasion. The notable dress they wore, are THE STOLE, CHASUBLE and Zucchetto (otherwise known as Skullcap), and here is what they didn’t know about each of these clergy clothes;
1. THE STOLE
The stole is worn by priests, deacons and Bishops. The stole is worn only during the celebration of sacraments or blessing of sacramental. The stole is not worn when attending a political meeting or function that is not liturgical in nature.
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It is a strip of material that is embroidered with different designs or just a simple cross. There are different colours and they vary with respect to the liturgical season or feast day. It is the most important vestment because it signifies authority. This is why, even in the absence of other vestments due to some reason(s), the priest can celebrate the mass just with the Stole alone.
A sleeveless outer garment worn by a priest at Mass. It is worn over all other vestments and is made of silk, velvet, or other rich material usually decorated with symbols. The arms are to be free when it is worn. It symbolizes the yoke of Christ and signifies charity. It is a vestment used only during mass.
There are different colours and times they’re worn. . .
1. Red: Feast of Martyrs, Pentecost, Good Friday, Palm Sunday, Mass of the Holy Spirit, Feast of Apostles.
2. Green: Ordinary season of the year.
3. Violet: Lent, Advent, Funerals, sacrament of reconciliation.
4. White/Gold: Easter, Christmas, Feast days of saints.
5. Pink (Rose): 3rd Sunday of Advent and on Laetare Sunday (fourth Sunday of lent).
3. Zucchetto (Skullcap)
The small skullcap that is typically worn by Bishops, Cardinals and Pope is called the zucchetto (plural- zucchetti.) The Pope’s zucchetto is white, that of the Cardinals is red, while the ones for the Bishops is purple. Historically, the skullcap was created to protect the part of the wearer’s head bared by tonsure.It is used to cover that part from cold.
(Tonsure is a ritual shaving of the crown of the head as a sign of humility and one’s religious vocation. It is also a way of identifying with Christ who wore a crown of thorns during his passion. It was usually a requirement that before ordination to the priesthood, the circular shaving of the person’s crown of head is done. This was later abolished by Pope Paul VI in 1972.)
Today, the zucchetto symbolizes the bishop’s duty to keep watch over his whole flock, sustaining the weak and wavering, solidifying the faith, and leading those gone astray back into the true fold.