The Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Peter Nwankwo with some of the awardees.
Fifteen years after the creation of the Parish, the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev Dr. Paulinus Ezeokafor in well attended ceremony on Sunday, August 27, 2017 dedicated the beautiful and finished Saints Peter and Paul’s Catholic Church, Umunze in Orumba South L.G.A of Anambra State to be in totality, a holy place of worship for God.
With the dedication, Ss Peter and Paul’s Catholic Church, Umunze became the third dedicated Church in Akpu Region. Prior to the dedication the Parish organized a three days retreat which featured rosary procession round the church, and was concluded with a social/gala night.
The Catholic bishop of Awka Diocese also at the event which doubled with his pastoral visit to the parish, blessed a grotto of Blessed Virgin Mary Mediatrix of all Graces that was donated to the parish by Mr. Lawrence Emeka Iyiakaimo.
Speaking at the event, Bishop Ezeokafor expressed his joy over what he described as impressive growth of the parish and good leadership of the parish priest, Rev. Fr. Peter Nwankwo. He extolled the parish priest for putting the funds he received into judicious use in the various structures built, saying that the parish recorded so much progress, despite the current economic recession.
In his homily, the bishop warned the parishioners against desecrating the holy dedicated church of God with social activities meant for the hall and other social places.
He charged all to be embodiments of virtues that were pleasing to God as well as bear true witness to Christ as ideal Christians. The bishop commended all who donated in support of the church building project and advised the faithful to join hands together and work for the growth of the church.
Parish C.W.O presents her gifts to the bishop.
As part of the dedication, the Catholic Bishop of Ahiara Diocese, Most Rev Peter Ebere Okpaleke had on 20th August, 2017 raised 280 deserving parishioners to soldiers of Christ through the Sacrament of Confirmation, and on 19th August, 2017, joined 19 Couples in Holy matrimony.
In his remarks, the host Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Peter Nwankwo on behalf of the Vicar, Rev. Fr. Martin Okafor and entire parishioners, thanked God for his love and care on the parish. 'God has been faithful, what seemed to be difficult has today become a reality. Ss Peter & Paul Parish, Umunze, now has a dedicated church', Fr Nwankwo said.
He thanked all who contributed towards the church building and prayed for God's continuous blessings on them. The parish priest also appreciated Bishop Ezeokafor for his fatherly love and understanding on the parish.
Highlights of the event were presentation of gifts to the bishop by various societies and zones of the parish, cultural dance by the Holy Child Association and presentation of various awards to 37 individuals.
Bishop Ezeokafor (4th from left) with Rev Fr Peter Nwankwo (5th from left) and some of the dignitaries at the event. Third from left is the Anambra State Commissioner for Health, Dr Josephat Akabuike; fourth from left is Hon Princess Nicky Ugochukwu while the bishop is flanked on his left by the Head of Service of Anambra State, Barr. Harry Udu, and others.
Among the awardees were late Chief Sir S.I Onyido (KSM), Umuogwara Family, Ezeukwu Family, Ndiukeje Family, Obundashi Family, late Mr. Rueben Okpara, late Chief Sir Foraansu, Late Chief James Eze, Late Mr Emmanuel Ugwudike, Chief Cletus Ibeto and Mr Lawrence Emeka Iyiakimo.
They also included Rev Fr Francis Oranye, Rev Fr. Philip Ofojebe, Ogbuefi Francis Elekwechi, Rev Fr. Damian Ogwata, Dr Godwin Okoli, Rev Fr Fabian Bielu, Sir/Lady Christopher Okpara , Sir Arch Christian Okpara, Mr. Paschal Kurume, Mr. Fidelis Chinenye, Rev Sr. Anthonia Obinwanne , Rev Fr. Peter Nwankwo and late Rev. Fr. Stephen Okeke.
Others were late Mr. Edmond Irechukwu, late Mr Patrick Emere, late Catechist Cosmas Okoli, Mr. Eugene Egwu, Mrs. Bridget Elekwechi, Mr. Anayo Okafor, Mrs. Veronica Ogbuagu, late Mr. Vitus Mbeeru, Mrs. Cecilia Odoemena, Mr. Hyacinth Umeh, Dr Livinus Akamobi, Mr. Michael Okeke and Mrs. Agatha Nneku.
Cutting of the dedication cake.