News Update

Final Year Students of St. Camillus De Lellis Chaplaincy Celebrate

…Faith is trust and trust is a process— Rev Fr Anusi

…I will miss Deo Gratias Chapel, Fr Chetanna – Final year student

By Mercy Hill

On Sunday June 20, 2021, the final year Catholic students at the College of Health Sciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Okofia Campus, Nnewi, celebrated their thanksgiving Mass for a successful academic pursuit in the university.

It will be recalled that every year, graduands of the chaplaincy hold a thanksgiving Mass in appreciation to God and in gratitude to the chaplaincy for being a home for students from all walks of life. This time, ‘the Garnets’ as they are called, came out in their numbers to lift up their own banner.

Leading in the concelebrated Eucharistic Mass, the Director of Fides Media, Rev Fr Dr Martin Anusi, who had been a friend of the chaplaincy for over five years noted in his homily, that the life of every Christian should be grounded in faith, trust and love, explaining that faith bred love, and trust was a virtue which demanded  process to harness.

Drawing his reflection from characters in the bible, Fr Anusi noted that it was faith that came through the trust process of the Blessed Virgin Mary, that made her harness the word she got from the Angel and bore Jesus Christ who was the Saviour of the world. He went further to explain that virtue was judged only by what it meant to the receiver than what it was for the giver.  ”Even the name of God, is made established for us and not for Himself” he said.

The Chaplain, Rev Fr Chetanna Chukwuneke (1st right) Welcoming Fides Director, Rev Fr Martin Anusi (2nd Left) at the beginning of the Mass; While Fr Innocent Egwuozor (Chaplaincy Vicar, 2nd right ) and Fr Kingsley Okpata (1st left)

He continued by advising the congregation to remove any form of self in the good things they do. He recounted several experiences of young people who were led astray by people who posed as helpers. ”People these days help for the wrong reasons and as such, lead others astray,” he echoed.

The Fides Director, extolled the graduands for their visible contributions and impact to the chaplaincy, noting that because of the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, they were the only set that received less from the kind gestures of their chaplain, Rev Fr Engr Chetanna Chukwuneke, who had availed other final year students the platform to explore and gained opportunities for excursions in and outside the country.

Appreciating them for their generosity, Fr Anusi commended them for being patient and for the wonderful gifts of the CCTV cameras they mounted at the chaplaincyrectory, the crucifix and then the two-air conditioner sets they bought for the chaplaincy. He gave them a new meaning to the their name, GARNETS: Get All Resources, Nurture, Empower, Transform Society.

For his part, the shepherd of the chaplaincy, Rev Fr Engr Chetanna Chukwuneke, explained in his address to the final year students, class of 2021, that they were not just created special but had earned a space in his heart because they did simple things in extraordinary ways.

Describing them as priceless and precious just like their name implied, ”the Garnets”, Fr Chukwuneke, extolled them for being distinct both at individual level and as a team. As a father to his children, he highlighted their weaknesses as well as their strengths, urging them to continue being determined in life projects, just as they have done in the chaplaincy. ”You amongst all final year forum of the chaplaincy have received least from us, but you have given so much to us” he said.

Appreciating them for the legacy projects, (provision of CCTV cameras and gadgets for DEO GRATIAS Rectory of Maryland, donation of a life size crucifix and then two airconditioners and then active participation in various associations and pious societies, he noted that they would be greatly missed. He wished them a beautiful life as they marked a new stage outside the walls of the college as ambassadors of both the chaplaincy and the university.

Fr Anusi delivering the homily

He thanked Fr Anusi for being a great friend and support system to St Camillus de Lellis Chaplaincy and to his assistant, Fr Innocent Egwuozor and then Rev Fr Kingsley Okpata, a classmate of his Vicar, who were concelebrants at the thanksgiving Mass.

Speaking to Fides in an interview, one of the final year students of the Department of Medical Laboratory Science (MEDLAB), Miss Munachimso M. Iheanacho, said that every semester in school was like a challenge and final year was toughest of all the years.  ”Final year tested everything in us but thank God we overcame”, she said. “I believe everyone had an experience in school that required us to thank God.

It was a huge success that required a huge thanksgiving. God was with us every step of the way. Ndi Igbo si na ‘ekele eze na nke o mere, o mekwa ozo”, Muna explained. She revealed that the chaplaincy helped her in her most difficult moment which was the final year: ”the Deo Gratias Chapel took me in, countless times, and wiped my tears.

I had periods of depression in my finals, but the sermons seemed to always heal me and of course I was holding onto my rosary so tightly. Mother Mary played a huge role that I will not stop talking about, I had my own share of miracles”, she explained. She bore her mind stating that leaving the chaplaincy was a mixed feeling for her.

A cross section of mammoth crowd of students in attendance at the Mass

”I am happy that I would be leaving to go and chase my dreams, applying everything that I have learned to build my own empire, she continued, “but then, I will miss everything about my chaplaincy. I will miss the lovely sermons, the choir, my Mother of Perpetual Help Society.

I will certainly not forget my Chaplain Fr Cheche” she cried. For his part, the president of the Final Year Forum (FYF), Mr. Stephen Ejike Agina, said that the chaplaincy had been a home for him, and the various associations had formed him to be a better person. He noted that they had left good legacies and prayed that their successors would have the motivation to sustain it.

Dignitaries at the Mass included the Head of Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Dr Mrs Chioma Obi, and a lecturer of the Human Biochemistry Department, Prof. Ngozi  Okpogba. Among the highlights of the event was the presentation of over 300 inspiring books to the graduands by their Chaplain.

On Sunday June 20, 2021, the final year Catholic students at the College of Health Sciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Okofia Campus, Nnewi, celebrated their thanksgiving Mass for a successful academic pursuit in the university.

It will be recalled that every year, graduands of the chaplaincy hold a thanksgiving Mass in appreciation to God and in gratitude to the chaplaincy for being a home for students from all walks of life. This time, ‘the Garnets’ as they are called, came out in their numbers to lift up their own banner.

Leading in the concelebrated Eucharistic Mass, the Director of Fides Media, Rev Fr Dr Martin Anusi, who had been a friend of the chaplaincy for over five years noted in his homily, that the life of every Christian should be grounded in faith, trust and love, explaining that faith bred love, and trust was a virtue which demanded  process to harness.

Drawing his reflection from characters in the bible, Fr Anusi noted that it was faith that came through the trust process of the Blessed Virgin Mary, that made her harness the word she got from the Angel and bore Jesus Christ who was the Saviour of the world. He went further to explain that virtue was judged only by what it meant to the receiver than what it was for the giver.  ”Even the name of God, is made established for us and not for Himself” he said.

He continued by advising the congregation to remove any form of self in the good things they do. He recounted several experiences of young people who were led astray by people who posed as helpers. ”People these days help for the wrong reasons and as such, lead others astray,” he echoed.

The Fides Director, extolled the graduands for their visible contributions and impact to the chaplaincy, noting that because of the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, they were the only set that received less from the kind gestures of their chaplain, Rev Fr Engr Chetanna Chukwuneke, who had availed other final year students the platform to explore and gained opportunities for excursions in and outside the country.

Appreciating them for their generosity, Fr Anusi commended them for being patient and for the wonderful gifts of the CCTV cameras they mounted at the chaplaincyrectory, the crucifix and then the two-air conditioner sets they bought for the chaplaincy. He gave them a new meaning to the their name, GARNETS: Get All Resources, Nurture, Empower, Transform Society.

For his part, the shepherd of the chaplaincy, Rev Fr Engr Chetanna Chukwuneke, explained in his address to the final year students, class of 2021, that they were not just created special but had earned a space in his heart because they did simple things in extraordinary ways.

Describing them as priceless and precious just like their name implied, ”the Garnets”, Fr Chukwuneke, extolled them for being distinct both at individual level and as a team. As a father to his children, he highlighted their weaknesses as well as their strengths, urging them to continue being determined in life projects, just as they have done in the chaplaincy. ”You amongst all final year forum of the chaplaincy have received least from us, but you have given so much to us” he said.

Appreciating them for the legacy projects, (provision of CCTV cameras and gadgets for DEO GRATIAS Rectory of Maryland, donation of a life size crucifix and then two airconditioners and then active participation in various associations and pious societies, he noted that they would be greatly missed. He wished them a beautiful life as they marked a new stage outside the walls of the college as ambassadors of both the chaplaincy and the university.

He thanked Fr Anusi for being a great friend and support system to St Camillus de Lellis Chaplaincy and to his assistant, Fr Innocent Egwuozor and then Rev Fr Kingsley Okpata, a classmate of his Vicar, who were concelebrants at the thanksgiving Mass.

Speaking to Fides in an interview, one of the final year students of the Department of Medical Laboratory Science (MEDLAB), Miss Munachimso M. Iheanacho, said that every semester in school was like a challenge and final year was toughest of all the years.  ”Final year tested everything in us but thank God we overcame”, she said. “I believe everyone had an experience in school that required us to thank God.

It was a huge success that required a huge thanksgiving. God was with us every step of the way. Ndi Igbo si na ‘ekele eze na nke o mere, o mekwa ozo”, Muna explained. She revealed that the chaplaincy helped her in her most difficult moment which was the final year: ”the Deo Gratias Chapel took me in, countless times, and wiped my tears.

I had periods of depression in my finals, but the sermons seemed to always heal me and of course I was holding onto my rosary so tightly. Mother Mary played a huge role that I will not stop talking about, I had my own share of miracles”, she explained. She bore her mind stating that leaving the chaplaincy was a mixed feeling for her.

”I am happy that I would be leaving to go and chase my dreams, applying everything that I have learned to build my own empire, she continued, “but then, I will miss everything about my chaplaincy. I will miss the lovely sermons, the choir, my Mother of Perpetual Help Society.

I will certainly not forget my Chaplain Fr Cheche” she cried. For his part, the president of the Final Year Forum (FYF), Mr. Stephen Ejike Agina, said that the chaplaincy had been a home for him, and the various associations had formed him to be a better person. He noted that they had left good legacies and prayed that their successors would have the motivation to sustain it.

Dignitaries at the Mass included the Head of Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Dr Mrs Chioma Obi, and a lecturer of the Human Biochemistry Department, Prof. Ngozi  Okpogba. Among the highlights of the event was the presentation of over 300 inspiring books to the graduands by their Chaplain.