By Amaka Olua
The Catholic Men's Organization, CMO, of Holy Trinity Parish, Nanka, Orumba North L.G.A Anambra State, on August 18, held her merit award ceremony.
The historical merit award ceremony which was conferred on about a hundred individuals, also served as an avenue to appreciate them for their dedication, support and contribution to the growth of the parish.
Leading in the Concelebrated Holy Mass, the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev Paulinus Ezeokafor, basing his reflection on the Sunday reading, said it was the duty of a prophet of God to preach the word of God.
He said that Jeremiah suffered because of truth, saying that truth brought about suffering for the children of God. He advised the faithful to stand firm in fighting for justice and truth, noting that truth must be said at all times.
The prelate charged the faithful to see heaven as their target and strive to be of good conduct and be ready to defend their faith.
Bishop Ezeokafor flayed the ban on prayers in the market, saying that prayer was the most important thing in the life of every human.
He said that prayers removed evil manipulation and called on the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano, to review the decision. He however commended Gov Obiano on what he had done so far in the state, especially in the area of security of life and property, calling on him to look at some of the roads in the state, which, the Bishop noted, were in poor states.
Bishop Ezeokafor, while calling on elected public office holders to always remember the people they are representing, charged Christians to protect their faith, especially now the Christian faith was under threat.
He warned traditional rulers and presidents general against giving out the land of their respective communities to Fulani herdsmen.
Speaking, Governor Willie Obiano assured the bishop of his administration's commitment in tackling some of the challenges he mentioned, saying that his administration was building more quality roads and would give every deplorable road a facelift.
In his remarks, the chairman of the occasion, Chief Damian Okeke Ogene, thanked God for the success of the event. He commended Bishop Ezeokafor for his selfless efforts in piloting the affairs of the dioceses and also commended the CMO members for initiating the idea of giving awards to those who had worked tirelessly for the growth of the Church.
In a chat with Fides, the coordinator, Chief Ikechukwu Ezenwankwo, thanked God for the success of the event, saying they had been planning for the event for six months.
He said the merit awards ceremony was organized in a bid to appreciate both the living and dead who had contributed towards the growth of the parish.
For his part, the chairman, CMO Holy Trinity Parish, Mr. Philip Nwankwo, recalled that when he took over the mantle of leadership they had nothing. He said the award ceremony was the first of its kind.
He described the merit award as their little way of appreciating those who had supported the growth of the parish.
Also speaking, the vice chairman, Parish Council, Nze Martin Okoye, expressed his joy over the event, saying that the award ceremony was initiated under his administration. He said that awards were given to some individuals who had thrown their massive support to the parish.
In their welcome address presented by the secretary CMO, Mr. Innocent Enemuoh, the CMO said they organized the award to accord recognition to the clergy, parishioners and friends of the parish who had contributed in various way to the building and uplift of the parish.
Disclosing that posthumous awards would be given to their fallen heroes, he said that the since the creation of parish in 1996, the journey had been very challenging. He commended Bishop Ezeokafor for accepting to celebrate with them, not minding his tight schedule.