A priest of the Anglican Communion in Orlu Diocese, Rev. Samuel Eluwogu, has been defrocked by the Anglican Bishop of Orlu and Archbishop Emeritus of the Ecclesiastical Province of Owerri, Most Rev. Bennett Okoro.
A letter dated June 15, 2013 communicating his deposition from exercising priestly function in the Anglican Communion and made available to the Christian Voice alleged that the priest had “indecorously and physically” attacked his superiors in the ministry in the public.
According to the letter, the action was contrary to the oath of allegiance which Eluwogu took.
It was, however, alleged that the defrocking of the priest was a culmination of some events that had happened in the past for which the priest was alleged to be unrepentant.
The letter signed by Archbishop Okoro, had recalled that last year, Rev. Eluwogu was accused of introducing a doctrine that was not in conformity to the approved doctrine of the Anglican Communion.
The letter alleged that the priest was teaching the congregation the use of bitter cola, bitter leaf stems and various types of herbs in prayers, a doctrine considered spurious and contrary to the teachings of the church.
When he was summoned in the presence of 10 Archdeacons and admonished to stop the exercise, he was alleged to have refused to heed to the warning.
Rev. Eluwogu was said to have flared up on May 7, this year allegedly when he was summoned the second time and in the public glare, rained blows on two Archdeacons, wounding them in the process. The letter said he was again found guilty and was subsequently suspended for seven months to serve as a deterrent to others as well as give him room to repent.
The issue, however, took a different turn according to the letter when Rev. Eluwogu, who was at St. Mathew’s Church Amaokpara, resigned as a priest of the Anglican Communion, alleging that he was not given a hearing.
Archbishop Okoro stated that this was false, interpreting the resignation to mean that the priest was not really to show any remorse.
“This is to say the least an ecclesiastical lie inconsistent with your avowals of faithfulness and the norm of priestly decorum;” the letter stated.
In defrocking him, therefore, the Archbishop stated; “This sentence of deposition has cancelled your license as a priest of the Anglican Church which you exercised within our Episcopal jurisdiction. Return the said licence to us immediately as you can no longer put it into any use.”
He, however, assured him of his prayers for him as he chooses a future occupation.
Efforts to reach Rev Eluwogu proved abortive as he was said not to be in town.