By Chukwudi Ikpe
The Anglican Bishop of Owerri, Rt. Rev. Chukwuma oparah, last weekend, performed his first Episcopal function of confirmation at St. Barnabas Church, Obeakpu, Umunoha, in the Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo State.
A total of 65 candidates were confirmed at the event which was an epoch one in the episcopacy of Bishop Oparah who was consecrated and enthroned in November last year.
The candidates received their confirmation on Saturday, March 2, while the Holy Communion service was held on Sunday March 3, at Christ’s Anglican Church, Umunoha.
In his remarks, Bishop Oparah charged the newly confirmed candidates not to forget Jesus Christ.
He assured them that the Holy Spirit which they have received will strengthen them always. He encouraged them to be an example to others.
Earlier in a sermon during the confirmation service, Rev. Canon Uneze Ukaegbu charged the faithful to ensure that the great commission of preaching the gospel is not only sustained but taken to a greater level.
Taking his text from Matthew 28:19-20, he reminded Christians that it is their duty to preach the gospel and to make disciples in all nations.
Canon Ukaegbu, who is the Vicar of St. Stephen’s Anglican Church Orji, pointed out that the gospel is the truth, stressing that many have fallen into sin due to ignorance of the gospel.
He, therefore, charged the people of God not to be ashamed of the gospel and assured the newly confirmed Anglicans that the holy spirit will enable them preach the gospel.
The service was conducted by the Administrator of Umunoha Archdeaconry, Rev. Canon Timothy Igbokwe assisted by the priest in charge of the church, Rev. Canon Benjamin Nwandikom while the only lesson taken from Acts 8:14-17 was read by one of the confirmed Anglicans Akachukwu Aso.
In his vote of thanks, the Administrator of Umunoha Archdeaconry, Rev. Canon Timothy Igbokwe was full of praise and gratitude to the Diocesan for making the parish his first port of call in his Episcopal function of confirmation. He also appreciated the Bishop’s wife, Mrs. Chidiebere Oparah (Mama Owerri) who was also present at the confirmation service.