The Role Of Christian Association Of Nigeria (CAN) In Church Regulation In Nigeria

Project and Seminar Material for Theology and Biblical Studies

The Role Of Christian Association Of Nigeria (CAN) In Church Regulation In Nigeria


Abstract


The study focuses on the appraisal of the role of Christian Association of Nigeria in church regulation in Nigeria. The study employs the use of survey research design. The population of this study consisted of all the members of CAN, Lagos Branch, a simple random sampling technique was used to select 28 respondents for the study and a questionnaire was the instrument for data collection. Primary data were obtained through questionnaire and personal interviews with both management and senior staff of the commission. Secondary data were collected through published reports, books, internet, journals, newspapers and magazines. The reliability of the instrument used in the study was determined by the corrected questionnaire administered randomly on selected teachers. The main objective of the study is to appraise the role played by CAN in the Nigerian church. Three research questions and one research hypothesis guided the study. Efforts should be made to enlighten Nigerians on the roles played by the CAN.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

The Christian Association of Nigeria was founded in 1976 as body to unify the numerous Christian denominations in Nigeria. Minchakpu, Obed (2000). The members of the organization during its formative years were made up of the Catholic Church and mainline Protestant groups. But it later expanded to include Pentecostal churches as well. The organization consist of five blocs which are the Christian Council of Nigeria, the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria, the Evangelical Fellowship of West Africa, and the Organisation of African Instituted Churches. The CAN has different sections which include a National Executive Council consisting of 105 members, who are responsible for electing the president the Women and Youth Wings, and a General Assembly of 304 members (which ratifies the President’s election).Between 1976 and the current period the organization has expanded in membership comprising of almost every churches in Nigeria which professes to follow Christ. The drafted provisional constitution for CAN was to define the nature and function of the association, clarify its membership and defined the fellowship of Churches, working together to promote the glory of God through the expansion and unification of the churches, and leading them to salvation and all its fruits. The Functions of the Association included to unify of the Church, so that they all may be one; Link up Christians to proffer solutions to impending issues, To enable churches consult together and, when necessary, make common statements and take common action, to cater for the spiritual and moral welfare of Christians and the nation, to propagate the Gospel, to promote understanding among the various people and strata of society in Nigeria. The study seeks to appraise the role of Christian association of Nigeria in church regulation in Nigeria.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The nature of the Nigerian constitution makes provision for the freedom of religion and worship. Consequently, among the prominent religion in the country is the Muslim religion and Christianity. There emerges a strong force in the northern part of Nigeria to enforce the Islamic religion and convert the Christians to Muslim. This situation did not go down well with the Christians in the northern part of Nigeria almost was resulting into conflict. Also, the lack of an umbrella body for the Christians fold constituted another reason for separation which existed among the Christians at that time. This situation retarded the growth of the church and as well as limited the role of the church in Nigeria’s socio political development. Therefore, the need for the evolution of a body to protect the interest of the church, unify it and foster its expansion became necessary. Therefore, the problem confronting the study is to appraise the role of Christian association of Nigeria in church regulation in Nigeria.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

The Main Objective of the study is to appraise the role of Christian association of Nigeria in church regulation in Nigeria.

The specific objectives include:

  1. To find out how effective CAN is in church regulation.
  2. To investigate the roles of CAN in church regulation.
  3. To identify the factors militating against the effectiveness of CAN in church regulation.


1.4 Research Questions

  1. How effective is CAN in church regulation?
  2. What are the roles of CAN in church regulation?
  3. What are the factors militating against the effectiveness of CAN in church regulation?

1.5 Statement of the Hypothesis

Ho1: The role of Christian Association of Nigeria in church regulation is not effective.


1.6 Significance of the Study

The study appraises the role of Christian association of Nigeria in church regulation in Nigeria. The study shall therefore serve as veritable source of information to stakeholders to proffer interventions which will address the problem.


1.7 Scope of the Study

The study focuses on the appraisal of the role of Christian association of Nigeria in church regulation in Nigeria.


1.8 Limitations of the Study

The study was confronted with logistics and geographical factors.


1.9 Definition of Terms

C.A.N Defined

The Christian Association of Nigeria was founded in 1976 as body to unify the numerous Christian denominations in Nigeria. The members of the organization during its formative years were made up of the Catholic Church and mainline Protestant groups. But it later expanded to include Pentecostal churches as well. The organization consist of five blocs which are the Christian Council of Nigeria, the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria, the Evangelical Fellowship of West Africa, and the Organisation of African Instituted Churches.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Summary

This study focused on the role of Christian Association of Nigeria in church regulation. The study was set to address three objectives and one research hypothesis.

The objectives which include:

  1. To find out how effective CAN is in church regulation.
  2. To investigate the roles of CAN in church regulation.
  3. To identify the factors militating against the effectiveness of CAN in church regulation.

Based on the above stated objectives and the study carried out, the following findings were made:

  1. That CAN is not effective in church regulation.
  2. That the roles of CAN in church regulation include but not limited to supporting educational institutions; building schools; helping in advising the government of the day; serving as intercessors for the land and preach peace and live in peace.
  3. That the factors militating against the effectiveness of CAN in church regulation include poor funding; lack of unity among the church denominations; high level of insecurity; corruption and tribal politics in CAN.

5.2 Conclusion

The main purpose of this study is to assess the role of Christian Association of Nigeria in church regulation. Three research questions and one research hypothesis guided the study.

In this study, a survey research design was adopted, the population of this study consisted of all the members of CAN, Lagos Branch, a simple random sampling technique was used to select 28 respondents for the study and a questionnaire was the instrument for data collection. Relevant literatures were reviewed which guided the objectives and methodology of this study. As result of the field study and analysis of results, the following findings were made:

  1. That CAN is not effective in church regulation.
  2. That the roles of CAN in church regulation include but not limited to supporting educational institutions; building schools; helping in advising the government of the day; serving as intercessors for the land and preach peace and live in peace.
  3. That the factors militating against the effectiveness of CAN in church regulation include poor funding; lack of unity among the church denominations; high level of insecurity; corruption and tribal politics in CAN.

5.3 Recommendations

Based on the findings of this study, the following recommendations are made:

  1. Efforts should be made to enlighten Nigerians on the roles played by CAN in church regulation.
  2. CAN should seek to increase her source of funding.
  3. There should be a reduction in tribal politics in CAN.

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