By Mercy Hill & Precious Ukeje
St. Johnbosco Junior Seminary celebrated their annual Patron Feast and Parents’ Day on Saturday, 8 February 2020 at the school premises at Isuaniocha, Awka North L.G.A, Anambra State.
The celebration began with a concelebrated Thanksgiving Mass presided by the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Paulinus C. Ezeokafor.
In his homily during the Mass, Bishop Ezeokafor said parents needed the ability to discern their wards, guide them through the right path and then nurture them for the future ahead.
He also noted that the Seminary groomed young people to be responsible, balanced and form an integral person in the society. He explained that the seminary trained people not only to become priests but to be responsible and cater for themselves, their families and society. He explained that being a priest was not the only way to heaven, as many seminarians grow with the wrong notion that the door to heaven was only opened to those in the priestly vocation.
He advised parents to avoid pushing their children to vocations they were not called to, but they should discern and guide them according to their dreams and talents.
He also urged all the parish priests with their members, pious organizations and parents in the diocese to always attend the feast day celebration and support the welfare of the seminarians as everyone was a stakeholder.
The Bishop however commended the parents for their support thus far both to the seminary and the church at large. He also appreciated the formators at the Seminary, who through their apostolate had made themselves available to nurture young people who were kept under their care and supervision.
In his address of welcome at the reception, the Rector of St. Johnbosco Seminary, Isuaniocha, Rev. Fr. Paulinus Chukwukebe, thanked God for the gift of the seminary and His blessings on the school since its inception in 1982. He also appreciated Bishop Ezeokafor for his fatherly concern towards the welfare of the seminary. He further thanked the Awka Diocesan priests, the Christian Women Organization, Christian Men Organization, old boys of the seminary and all who rendered support to them in various capacities.
Fr. Chukwukebe revealed that the Seminary made a hundred percent pass in the 2019 West African Senior Secondary Schools Council and the National Examination Council Examinations. He also announced that they had a lot of renovations within the academic year but regretted that some of the renovations were yet to be completed due to financial constraints. The Rector, however solicited for funds to complete those projects.
The event featured awards presentation to students based on character and learning. There was also fundraising to complete the renovation of the school, mounting of CCTV for the school compound among others.