Praise God with drum and dance! Psalm 150,4.

The Claretian Communications – West Nigeria Delegation – in affiliation with the Claret Publishing Group (CPG), announces the arrival of the daily spiritual companion in two titles: Bible Diary 2020 and the debut edition of Yoruba edition Kíka Bíbélì Lójoojúmo̩ 2020. With joy, our Christian faithful in all places, will once again journey with the Word of the Lord in the best possible manners they comprehend, worship and celebrate as Africans: dancing and drumming (cf. Ps 150:4). This is captured in the biblical slogan on the front cover of the diaries.

Designated as “Listeners and Servants of the Word”, the Claretian presence in the publication ministry dates back to the time of our Founder, St. Anthony Mary Claret, a print-evangelist par excellence from the middle to the later part of the 19th century. The Holy Father Founder was an apostle of using all ‘means possible’ for the spread of the Gospel. Publication marked a vital part of his ministry, which later became an important charismatic heritage of the Congregation. It could be said, in all verifiable facts, that Padre Claret foreknew and anticipated the present prodigious advancement in modern communication technology, and its efficacy in conveying the message of the kingdom.

Accordingly, the Congregation in her mission has continued to remain faithful to this charism thanks to the efforts of many of our missionaries, past and present, who have devoted time, energy and other resources to this ministry, a veritable platform for evangelization. Hence, the annual Bible Diary, a special and distinctive component of the Claretian Bible/Media Ministry, remains a powerful tool in the service of the Word and a handy instrument cum companion to keep the faithful daily renewed in spirit and abreast with the fundamental Christian teachings. 

In addition, the Claretian Missionaries, worldly recognized for their robust Biblical Apostolate and production of materials that aid the faithful in the journey of faith throughout the year, have produced the Bible Diary for more than thirty-four years. We currently have over a million copies printed annually in about 24 languages. Additionally, the great news for us in Nigeria is that for this 2020, the Claretian Communication House is publishing the Diary in Yoruba language – the very first attempt in any West African, nay, Nigerian language. It is primarily designed, like others, to foster a better understanding and pastoral use of the Bible: from the breaking of the Word – to the breaking of the Bread.

This giant effort, a dream come true, so-to-say, is in tandem with the Directory for Claretian publishers that says, “Claretian media apostolate is to develop within a particular social and cultural context that must be critically accepted and understood. Thus, it is necessary to carefully study the orientations of the local Church (at the continental, national or regional levels) and place our apostolic enterprises within this frame of reference” (para.10). 

Commenting on the debut Yoruba edition, the Bishop Emeritus of Ekiti diocese, a doyen of Yoruba language and an untiring publisher, +Baba Michael Fagun, wrote in his Forward that, “The entrepreneurship of the Claretian Missionaries has gone a step further by venturing into the publication of the Bible Diary containing daily scripture readings with exhortations in the local language of the evangelized, and in the Yoruba language for the first time. The Claretians among others have been engaged in the publication of the Bible Diary in English, but this Yoruba edition is first of its type in Nigeria. A foreign or second language cannot touch the heart as one’s mother tongue would. Hence the saying that translators are traitors.”

The Prelate continues, “Great appreciation to the Claretians for giving the Yoruba speakers this opportunity of dialoguing with the Lord through this Bible Diary in their mother tongue with words that touch the heart and soul. This was the plan of God when the Word was made flesh to dwell amongst us – Emmanuel. Thus, this Yoruba Bible Diary is compelling for every Yoruba speaker. A trial will convince you, as we say. It is a sure way of walking with the Lord daily to lead us in his Way, teach us his Truth, and grant us his Life eternal.”

Consequently, Kíka Bíbélì Lójoojúmo̩ 2020, the Yoruba version of the Claretian English Bible Diary, is dedicated, wholly and entirely, to the Yoruba faithful everywhere in the world. It is purely a lovely gift. An iconic apostolic memorabilia from the Nigerian Claretian Missionaries to the entire region of West-Nigeria, nay, the Christian faithful/audience in the Yoruba nation after so many illustrious years of Claretian prophetic witnessing in the missions within the vast landscape of this homogeneous, intelligent and deeply religious populace. 

The Diary is a daily spiritual companion. It is biblical in name/content and uniquely liturgical in use. Therefore, it is rightly a handmaid of the Bible and the Missal. Use it always as it has these unique features:

  • It is a prayer book – it has updated Common Daily Prayers of the Church
  • It is a Lectionary – Contains all Sunday and Weekday liturgical Readings
  • It has suitable Reflection for each Liturgical Calendar day of the 366 days
  • It is mini-Missal – Contains Rites of the Mass, Prefaces and Prayers
  • It comes in beautiful colours
  • The Yoruba edition is the first in any West African, nay, Nigerian language
  • It is affordable and reader-friendly
  • It is the best Christmas and New-year gifts to friends, colleagues and family
  • It is a Calendar Journal – a complete Diary
  • A Claretian representative at the UN composed an article in celebration of the 75 years of the UN while creating our awareness on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Africans must take note. The SDGs are explained.

The two editions of the Claretian Bible Diaries for 2020 come in beautiful colours of our lovely local gangan and sekere. If you do not see these traditional-cultural, musical instruments on the front covers of your Diary in these States: Delta, Edo, Ekiti, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Niger, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo and Abuja, then, it’s not Claretian. May be a pirated copy. Report via the phone number below. 

With drumming and dancing, let us journey with the Word of the Lord. 2020 is here!

Rev Fr Marcellinus Rebecca Igirigi, CMF


For the Claretian Communications, Lagos

090 6000 3819

>>>Click here to open the PDF of the op-ed article published in The Catholic Herald newspaper of the Archdiocese of Lagos<<<

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