It was a remarkable day of thanksgiving and gratitude to God as the Catholic Community of Obeledu in Anaocha L.G.A of Anambra state, gathered at St. Paul’s Parish, Obeledu, on Sunday 28 September 2019, to celebrate 25 years priestly ordination of Rev. Fr.Paul Mary Chukwukebe and 25 years religious profession of Rev. Sr. Agatha Ezeokoye.
The event which was tripled with the celebration of Rev Sr. Geraldine Okafor, who would be having her Religious Final Profession on Saturday 5th October 2019 at St. Joseph’s Parish Ekwulobia, had the presence of the three Catholic Bishops of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Paulinus Ezeokafor; His Auxiliary Jonas Benson and the Emeritus Bishop of Ahiara Diocese, Most Rev. Peter Okpalaeke.
The occasion was proceeded by a Eucharistic Holy Mass presided over by Fr. Paul Mary Chukwukebe, who appreciated God for His Grace, sustenance and guidance upon him and his co-celebrants and thanked those who stood by them these past twenty-five years in the ministry.
In his homily at the Holy Mass, Rev. Fr. Sebastine Anokwulu, thanked God for the gifts of the celebrants to the Obeledu Community, noting that their contribution to christendom and humanity was something to reckon with. He also recalled how Fr. Paul Mary had served the church in various capacities, ultimately forming great pastors for God’s flock by being a formator of young priests in the seminary.
Fr. Anokwulu, went further to advise Christians to embrace all godly virtues and uphold themselves in Christ through proper dedication and selfless giving, shunning whatever that would bring ridicule to God their creator.
He noted that Christians were supposed to be their brother’s keeper, sow good seeds of faith here on earth by following the right path, for whatever seed sown had a fruit thereof.
Speaking during the Mass, the Parish Priest of St. Paul’s Obeledu, Rev. Fr. Louis Nwobi, thanked God for His grace upon the celebrants and commended the ordination committee, Catholic Community of Obeledu, for their support and various inputs to ensure that the event went successfully. He also commended all the seminarians who he said had been of immense help through the planning stages of the event. He went further to describe the celebrants as great assets to the Church, Obeledu Community and humanity in general.
In the address of welcome read by the Secretary of Central Parish Pastoral Council, Mr. Lambert C. Okeke, he described the celebrants as men of goodwill who loved peace and progress. Mr. Okeke stated that the celebrants were people who loved GOD in their early lives which made them to respond to GOD’s call into the ministry. He further prayed GOD to continue to lead them on.
For his part, the Chairman ordination / Jubilee planning Committee, Mr. Ndubuisi Aniekwe, disclosed to Fides that it was the grace of God and the support from the Catholic Community of Obeledu that saw to the success of the event. He also encouraged the celebrants to continue working faithfully in the house of God.
In an interview with Fides, Rev. Sr. Agatha Ezeokoye said her gratitude was to God who had sustained her in the mission for twenty five years and to all those who stood by her. ‘I am because you were’ she said.
Others who spoke to Fides in their separate speeches echoed the great impact of the celebrants in their individual lives and in the church.
Highlights of the event were Folk Song presentation by seminarians, dance performances from various cultural groups and presentation of gifts.