The Anglican Bishop of Ohaji/Egbema, Rt. Rev. Chidi Collins Oparaojiaku, last December ordained three priests serving abroad, after their deaconate ordination in September, 2012.
Performing the ceremony in the Cathedral Church of St. Peter, Umuokanne Ohaji, the Bishop stated that ordination is not a gift or favour from the Bishop, rather it is a responsibility.
According to him, it is the Bishop’s duty to know whom to ordain, how and when to do “it as it is not a celebration.”
The prelate warned that any one called to the priesthood must be prepared to present his wife on the ordination day to ensure he has only one faithful wife to work with him in the ministry, as he can serve anywhere in the world. He urged them to show good examples wherever they are called to serve.
Preaching the sermon at the Eucharistic service, Ven. Amatu Onundu Christian Iwuagwu PhD, who is serving in the United Kingdom observed that the priestly ordination for the three deacons was designed by God as an affirmation of their readiness to move on in their faith which is irreversible.
He posited that their main job is to proclaim the body of Christ, tell the story of God’s love, resist evil and pray for all without fear, according to the biblical injunction in St. Mathews gospel, as well as imbibe holiness and selflessness in their job.
The preacher listed some of the obstacles face in the discharge of their duties as suffering which might occur physically, mentally and psychologically. He urged them to conquer it in order to excel. Others include home sickness, vision, disposition and humility. Ven Iwuagwu also counseled the newly ordained priests to live a Christ-like life by extending God’s love to others and win move souls for Him.
He stressed the need for them to love the area they are posted and keep away from immorality.
He reminded them of humility in service as nothing works without it, urging them not to be afraid of mistakes, rather they should move on in righteousness.
The ordained priests are Rev. Brown Tagbo Ikechukwu Olisa of Uruagu Nnewi, serving in St. Mark Church of England, Kennington, London, Rev. Nnamdi Raphael Maduka of Obizi Ezinaihitte Mbaise, at St. Mary the Virgin Parish Church London UK and Rev. Nitonye Samson from Okirika Rivers State and serving at Chapel of Redemption, Rsust Port Harcourt.
The Holy Communion was celebrated by the Bishop, Rt. Rev. C.C. Oparaojiaku (JP), assisted by Ven. Ikechi Ebems Onyealualam while the old testament reading was taken by Sir Engr. Ray Ogara, Rt. Hon. Barr. Noel Agwuocha Chukwukadibia (KSC) read the epistle while one of the newly ordained priests Rev. Brown Tagbo I. Olisa handled the gospel. Ven. Uche Levi Nkemdirim led in litany responses.