“With God above our rights to prove”
Remarks by Bishop John G. Innis
Resident Bishop of the Liberia Annual Conference, The United Methodist Church
Delivered on his behalf and the Church of Liberia by the Rev. Dr. George K.Weagba during the Thanksgiving and Intercessory service held at the Bethel Cathedral of Hope on July 22, 2012
In Commemoration 165th Independence Anniversary of Liberia.
Her Excellency Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, President of the Republic of Liberia,
His Excellency Joseph N.Boakai, Sr., Vice President of the Republic of Liberia,
Mr. Speaker and honorable members of the Legislature,
His Honorable Chief Justice and Members of the Judiciary,
Heads of Foreign Governments and International Bodies,
The Heads and representatives of the Faith Community,
Fellow Liberians, Ladies and Gentlemen:
I bring greetings of peace, love and unity on behalf of the Church of Liberia in the blessed name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ at this thanksgiving and intercessory service in celebration of the 165th Independence anniversary of our beloved country, Liberia.
Today, as we commence the one hundred sixty-fifth year of existence as a nation and people, and as we remember how far we have come, it is only expedient to begin this Independence celebration with an expression of gratitude to God Almighty for his grace and mercy that have brought us thus far. For the psalmist says, in Psalm 107:1 “Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness and for his wonderful works to the children of men!” Like the psalmist in Psalm 116:17, we could say, if it had not been for the Lord who was on our side Liberia would have been and extinct nation.
Therefore, let us continue to thank God for the peace that we now enjoy, for the leadership that God has given us, for the resilient spirit that we have as Liberians, and for the improvement in our social, economic, political, environmental, security and other needs.
Today, as we thank God for our independence, I challenge us fellow Liberians to be nationalistic if we must make our nation what it ought to be and move it forward. Hence, let us take the initiative and make sacrifices in the reconstruction process of our nation. Let us develop a good heart and love for our country. Our love for our country should result from a love for God. Similarly, let us pray for the leadership that the Lord has given us. The Bible says in First Timothy 2:1, we should pray for all people, for Kings and all who are in authority that we may lead a quiet and peaceful life. Thus; it is incumbent upon us as Liberians to sincerely pray for the president, her Excellency, Madam Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. If there is anything the president needs most from every Liberia as she steers the affairs of the nation, she needs our collective and individuals prayers. So, let us rally around the government and the president with sincere hearts as she leads our country.
Today, the Church of the Republic of Liberia is appealing to all peace-loving Liberians to give and serve our country in the spirit of unity. The Psalmist says, “How good and pleasant it is when brothers and sisters live together in unity”. Let us walk in unity and let unity be the hallmark in our ongoing reconstruction process. Unity is practical and not theoretical. We do not only talk unity, we practice unity. Let us do all we can, therefore, in our strength and power, to find a way to overcome the divisiveness that separates, disparages, disrespect, diminishes, and leaves us wounded and incomplete. Remember the adage, “United we stand, divided we fall.” Together as Liberians, we can make Liberia great.
Once again, as we celebrate 165 years of existence in this New Liberia, let us keep reminding ourselves of the lines in our National Anthem that say “In union strong success is sure. We cannot fail, with God above, our rights to prove, we will o’er all prevail, with heart and hand, our country’s because defending, we’ll meet the foe, with valor unpretending”.
I say to us, long live Liberia.
May God bless our nation and help us resolve to make Liberia “a home of glorious liberty by God’s command.”
HAPPY, HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!