By Kizito Umennadi and Valentine Nwankwo
A send-off party was last Wednesday, June 30, organized in honour of the former Director of Special Duties, Peter University, Achina, Rev Fr Charles Ogbuagu, who is about traveling to Canada for further studies in Canon Law.
The send-off ceremony which was organized by the present Director of Special duties, as well as the chaplain of St. Augustine’s Chaplaincy, Federal Polytechnic, Oko, Rev. Fr. Dr. John Umeojiakor, at the University which is gradually nearing completion, witnessed the presence of the Auxiliary Bishop of Awka, Most Rev. Jonas Benson Okoye; Vicar General, CADEK, Rev Fr Anthony Chiegboka; Episcopal Vicar for the Clergy, Fr Charles Umeoji; Chancellor of Awka Diocese, Fr Francis Chidume; Education Secretary, CADEK, and Rev Fr Vitais Azike.
Others included the former Rector, Magnificus of St Dominic Savio Seminary, Akpu, Rev Fr Joseph Nwanna; Parish Priests of Onneh and Achina Parishes, Frs Sebastian Anokwulu and Patrick Chukwuma; members of Awka and Ekwulọbịa presbyterium, seminarians, university site workers, friends and well-wishers.
They all came together to appreciate Fr Charles Ogbuagu for what they described as the wonderful work he did at the University in the name of the Church during his years of pastoral care of the place.
The ceremony saw speaker after speaker pouring encomiums on Fr Ogbuagu whom they described as very industrious, diligent, focused, gentle, deeply thorough and grounded in the daily discharge of his duties.
They equally advised him on the importance of being a true ambassador of Awka Diocese in the Canadian Diocese and the university he would work and study.
These were followed by donations to Fr Charles to help him financially attend to the myriads of needs that may come his way during his studies and stay there.
In his response, Fr Ogbuagu expressed deep gratitude to the bishops of Ekwulọbịa and Awka Dioceses for their kind words and advice, while promising to be of good conduct at all times.
He appreciated all the priests present for their brotherly love and care that, he noted, had continued to remain unwavering.
This was even as he thanked the seminarians, workers at the university site, friends and loved ones, for making out time to grace the occasion and to pray for him.
He also thanked all who made financial donations towards his overseas trip which, he assured, would be beneficial for him, especially during the time of extreme need.