In Adamawa state, the Catholic Church has built a mosque for Muslims.
Reverend Father Stephen Mamza, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Yola, explained why the church built a mosque for internally displaced Muslims at the St Theresa Camp in Yola, Adamawa State.
According to Mamza, because the Catholic Church built a church for the Christian IDPs, the church authorities in Yola thought it was fair and just to provide a “place of worship for the few Muslims among them.”
In an interview with Punch, the Catholic Bishop stated that the Boko Haram insurgency was a monster that the church was dealing with, citing the large number of IDPs in the camp.
“As you know, since 2014, the Catholic Diocese of Yola has been involved in taking care of displaced victims of insurgency – those displaced from southern Borno and also northern Adamawa, who ran into Yola for refuge,” the Reverend Father said. As a result, the church opened its doors to allow these people to erect their tents. At one point, we had over 3,000 people living on our church grounds. After the military reclaimed their homes, the majority of them returned to their original locations.
“However, there are those who continue to face insurgency threats, particularly those living on the border of Sambisa forest and unable to return to their homes due to Boko Haram’s activities since 2014. These people have been staying at the IDP camp set up at St. Theresa Cathedral. So we considered what we could do to improve their standard of living. Because we were getting tired of taking care of them, and donor fatigue was setting in. And the IDPs themselves were growing tired of staying in the camp – living in a small tent in a camp with children for seven years is not easy for anyone. As a result, I considered constructing a facility where the IDPs could be resettled.
“And thanks be to God, through the support of Mesio in Germany, we started last year in January the construction of 86 units of houses to be built for the 86 families still in our camp. On the housing estate, we built a church and a mosque and a school for the IDPs, which will soon be inaugurated. Already some of the IDPs have been moved into the estate.“In the first place, when we played host to these IDPs, we did not discriminate against any one of them. We didn’t ask what religion the IDPs belong to; we didn’t ask for their church denomination; we just treated them as human