Posted by Nwaorgu Faustinus, Ngor/Okpala | 16 May 2013 | 3,252 times
The former Parish Priest of St. Paul’s Catholic Parish Umuodagu Ntu in Ngor/Okpala Local Government Area of Imo State, Rev. Father Bethrand Ujunwa, has called on Christians to be united as a body.
Rev. Ujunwa made the call at a send-off and reception church service organised for him and the new Parish Priest, Rev. Father Cosmas Edochie, by the parishioners as a way to appreciate him for a meritorious six years of service in the parish.
Using the broom to drive home his massage of unity, the cleric said that when Christians stand as individual entities, just as a single broom stick, they can easily be defeated but when they are united as a collective indivisible entity, they will be in good position to overcome any threat and emerge victorious because igwe bu ike (multitude is strength)
Rev. Ujunwa noted that unity among Christians will bring about peace and development for the good of the society. Reading from the gospel of John 17:20-26, he charged Christians to love one another just as God loved Jesus Christ.
Earlier in her welcome address, Comrade Maria Eke commended the dogged efforts of Rev. Ujunwan saying:
“On his arrival on February 20, 2007 Rev. Fr. Bethrand Ujunwa left no stone unturned but quickly galvanised the people into action. By his efforts and in consonance with the efforts of the parishioners, mostly the CWO, the Parish House was completed, well-furnished along with the Boys Quarters.”
Comrade Eke also appreciated Fr. Ujunwa for convincing his non-parishioner friends to erect “a befitting Chapel which ranks second to none in the Archdiocese.” Besides, she noted that the cleric “started a nursery/primary school and within one year he provided a new and standard structure, an edifice to accommodate the school pupils,” adding:
“Rev. Fr. Bethrand with dogged persistence and enthusiasm negotiated and acquired over ten plots of land for further and future developmental purpose for the parish. He was a peacemaker. He mediated in and resolved some nagging and prolonged misunderstandings among families and villages.”
After receiving kind words and gifts from the Anglican Church in the community, Catholic organisations in the parish, individuals, and a solidarity club (Ofu Ama Solidarity Club) led by its leader, Nze Emmanuel, among others, Rev. Ujunwa said: “I am moved by the songs and all the pleasant things you have said. You have surprised me. I am overwhelmed by the love you showered on me. May God reward you all.”
Fr. Ujunwa later said in an interview: “Today is a great day for me, in the sense that the people here, whom I have stayed with for six years asked me to come over for them to appreciate me for the work I have done for them. I am very happy coming back to them, to thank them for their support, because they are not the one that called me to this ministry, it is God himself. I did what I was supposed to do, working for them here. But for them to recognise that father you did well, come let us tell you thank you, I appreciate them. I appreciate them for their efforts to make sure that everything went smoothly when I was here with them. They gave me their full support, they gave me full encouragement, they did all they could do to make sure that our mission here was successful. Today is significant and I am happy.”
The service held last Sunday (May 12) was graced by His Royal Highness and Ugoeze S.O. Nwaeke, Knights and Ladies of the church, traditional title holders, among others.
•Photo shows Rev. Fr. Ujunwa and the new Parish Priest, Rev. Edochie, welcoming the Anglican Priest to the event.
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