…Confirms about 120 candidates
As crusade against Osu/Ume/Diala divide continued to dominate the pastoral teachings and directives of the Catholic Archbishop of Owerri, Most Rev. Anthony J.V. Obinna, his pastoral visit to Holy Family Catholic Parish Uratta, Owerri North LGA last Sunday was not different as the Archbishop descended heavily on the segregative syndrome.
The Archbishop who arrived the Catholic community the previous day where he had interactive session with parishioners and community members also administered on the visit the Sacrament of confirmation on no fewer than 120 candidates.
Preaching on Sunday at the Eucharistic celebration, the Chief shepherd said he came to continue the good massage of the gospel. “Since the coming of Christ has reconciled both Jews and Gentiles in one fold family of God, it’s therefore instructive that followers of Christ would embrace one another in love and faith.”
Recalling how the Igbo land prior to the advent of the early Missionaries was engulfed with all sorts of fetish practices including the Osu/Ume/Diala segregation, the preacher expressed detest over the continued spate of ostracism appendage on some sections of people in Igbo land. He called on the faithful to stamp their feet on ground and say no to any form of human segregation.
According to him “Osu/Ume/Diala divide should no longer be found among Christians,” reminding that such sentiments were part of the devil’s machinations to continue to hoodwink the minds of God’s children.
Since the day was Solemnity of the Blood & Body of Christ, the chief shepherd who was joined at the Mass by Rev. Frs. Theodore Ihenetu, Wisdom Offurum, Gerard Onyekwere and Alphonsus Oha observed that Christ gave himself to the world so that his followers may have life in full. He however pointed out that such divine scenario informs communicants the need for constant state of grace. “When we receive communion worthily our graces increase immeasurably”.
Turning to the newly confirmed, the Archbishop who described them as new soldiers of Christ advised them to keep aglow the flames of the sacrament they received as they go about their daily businesses. This he opined would be possible through regular attendance of Masses, confessions and other religious activities.
An address of welcome made available at the event revealed the joy and happiness of the people toward the pastoral visit. The address which was signed by Rev. Fr. Gerard Onyekwere, Parish Priest, Sir Boniface Ariri and Dr. Charles Njoku Chairman, Parish Pastoral Council and Secretary respectively commended the Archbishop for his pastoral care and leadership. As they prayed for the Archbishop God’s continued guidance they pleaded with him not to stay too long in repeating the visit.
In return, while the Archbishop commended the parish priest for the infrastructural development taking place in the parish, he announced “free wedding” for couples living without the sacrament of marriage in the parish.
The event attracted parishioners and friends as they turned up to receive the Chief shepherd who was accompanied to the place by the Archdiocesan pastoral team of Sir Barr. Anthony Emeana, Lady Stella Acholonu, Bro. Ikechukwu Osuocha and Sis. Theresa Onyeneke.