. . . Says Human Welfare, Church's Greatest Commitment
By Chioma Ndife
The Auxiliary Bishop of Awka Catholic Diocese, His Lordship, Most Rev. Jonas Benson Okoye, has blessed and commissioned church edifies for use at St. Patrick's Catholic Church, Enugu-Umuonyia, Orumba North LGA, Anambra State.
Bishop Okoye blessed the church edifies which included Chapel of Eucharistic Adoration, Mary Queen of All Graces Grotto, Boys Quarters and Water Bolehole, on Thursday, December 26, 2019, during his Pastoral Visit. The visit also featured the administration of the Sacrament of Confirmation on over 75 Catholic faithful and inauguration of Holy Childhood Association in the Parish.
Fides gathered that the Grotto of Mary, Lady of All Graces was financed single-handedly by Lady JohnCarolEzeh through the support of her children in memory of her late husband's father, Sir James Ezeh.
Blessing the Chapel of Adoration built through Parish effort and Marian Grotto donated to the parish by Lady JohnCarolEzeh, Bishop Okoye emphasized the importance of such edifices in a parish, as well as benefits to be derived by the Catholic faithful through constant visitation and devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.
Declaring the boys' quarters and water borehole open, Bishop Okoye expressed optimism that the boy's quarters would provide conducive accommodation to some parish workers and decent source of water supply to indigenes and other residents at Enugu-Umuonyia Community.
He noted that the provision of such facilities would project the commitment which the church had in human welfare, saying that the Catholic Church would keep transforming the face of the earth for the better.
Earlier at the Holy Mass, Bishop Okoye, stated that the inauguration of Holy Childhood in the parish and the confirmation of over 77 candidates were indications that the Catholic Church would be in continuous growth in the community. He advised the newly inaugurated HCA members on the need for them to lend a helping hand to other children in need. He described children as living saints because of the way they did and acted.
He beckoned on the confirmedto start acting as Christ's soldiers, a position conferred on them through the Sacrament of Confirmation and be ready to defend the Catholic Church in Enugu-Umuonyia and beyond.
The Catholic prelate noted that with the chapel and Grotto's blessing, the parish had all it took for one to make heaven. He appreciated the efforts of the Parish Priest in upgrading the structural facilities in the parish.
Speaking to Fides, the Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Fabian Bielu, appreciated God for the success which they recorded in the various projects blessed by the bishop. He expressed the hope that the visit would usher in a breath of fresh air in the parish and bring about the dedication of the church building in no distant time. He said that the parish had earlier proposed for the church dedication but later changed the proposed day for the pastoral visit.
Fr. Bielu said the parish was moved to embark on the water project due to the enormous challenge which community dwellers faced due to shortage of water in the community.
Speaking on the motive behind the Grotto donation, Lady JohnCarolEzeh, explained that it was in fulfillment of the promise which she made to the Blessed Virgin Mary after the death of her Husband. She disclosed how she went to the Blessed Virgin with tears, seeking for her powerful intercession on the welfare of her children and assistance to train them effectively to be responsible individuals.
Lady Ezehrecalled how she committed all her children to the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary at the death of her husband, noting that the blessed Virgin never disappointed her. She revealed that all the children had attained success in their chosen professions and attributed it to Marian help.
She said a Marian grotto had been erected in Lagos and another in Enugu-Umuonyia in fulfillment of the promise she made to Mary. She advised women on the need to live a chaste life style and called on them to hold firmly onto Mary even in the most difficult situations.
For their part, the Traditional Ruler of Enugu-Umuonyia Community, P.N.Ezeamama, and a parishioner, Mr. Akobundu Nwosu, revealed that the Catholic Community was greatly committed in the affairs of the church. They noted that the joint efforts of the community members would help the parish to achieve its mapped out plans in due time.