St Patrick’s Agulu Celebrates her Septuagenarians and Above

…Three Odidama Agulu Priests among Celebrants

By Precious Ukeje

The Catholic community in Agulu, Anaocha Local Government Area in Anambra State, who worship at St Patrick’s Catholic Parish, Agulu, last Sunday, marked the birth anniversary of parishioners who are 70 years and above, an event which brought together the faithful in their hundreds.

Bishop Anaezichukwu Obodo leading in the liturgy of the Eucharist: Holy Communion

Among the celebrants were three priests of Odidama extraction of Agulu: Very Rev. Fr Chike Nwosu, 85; Rev. Fr Prof. Boniface Obiekezie, 70; and Very Rev. Fr Cajetan Ifeanyi Obiekezie, 70.

Bishop Anaezichukwu Obodo, Auxiliary Bishop of Enugu Diocese, who was the homilist during the Mass celebrated in honour of the celebrants, based his reflection on the need to thank God, noting that His (God) love endured forever.

The Catholic prelate said it was needful to thank God because despite the changes experienced in life, God did not change.

‘Everyone is born with a sheet with records of the person’s beginning and ending. However, every individual is responsible for what is written in the sheet during the time of life,’ Bishop Obodo said.

Bishop Anaezichukwu Obodo (wearing Miter); Rev. Fr Pius Odilimuo (1st priest from left); Very Rev. Fr Chike Nwosu (2nd priest from left), one of the birthday celebrants; pose with the birthday celebrants in a group picture

He congratulated the celebrants and urged them to continue living good Christian lives, committing themselves to God in prayers and embracing the changes that continue to occur in their lives.

Furthering the discourse on changes in life, the bishop noted that science was trying to make things easier for humanity, but was also killing humanity gradually. He recalled that technology had modified the way so many things were done, including ones that evaded human privacy.

He noted however that papal election of the supreme pontiff at the Vatican was one endeavour which technology was yet to disrupt its secrecy.

Later at the reception, in a welcome address jointly signed by Chiefs Innocent Okoye and Fidelis Okafor, chairman and secretary of the planning committee respectively, the Church described the day as a memorable one in the history of the parish, Agulu Town and the lives of the celebrants.

‘Birthday is an anniversary, remembrance, or memorial of the day in which a person is born, typically treated as an occasion for celebration and the giving of gifts,’ Chief Okafor explained during the presentation, adding that they were happy to have such celebration he described as wonderful in their time.

He appreciated members of the Planning Committee, as well as parishioners, for their time, efforts and initiative to make the occasion a success.

Chief Okafor also thanked the celebrants for accepting to be their guests, adding that the grace of aging was continued life. He urged them not to slack in setting new goals or to dream new dreams, notwithstanding their age.

In his remarks, the chairman of the occasion, Chief Fidelis Obiefuna, noted that the day’s event had mysteries it represented, appreciating the Parish Priest, Rev. Fr Romanus Okongwu, and other parishioners, for initiating and executing the event, while wishing the celebrants well.

Chief Obiefuna noted that prayer and greetings could never be given in excess, even as  he beseeched God to keep the celebrants in good health.

Most Rev. Anaezichukwu Obolo (4th left front row) and members of the Birthday Planning Committee

While he noted that nature could not be cheated, he said no matter how much a person tried to look younger, there were always signs to show that one was aging.

While concluding, the chairman urged the faithful in attendance to contribute to the projects of the church and also support fully, the birthday celebrants, as it brought innumerable blessings to one.