– Bishop Ayah urges Priests to be Faithful Ministers of the Gospel
– Frowns at Character Assassins and Rumour Mongers
By: Cosmas Essiet – Uyo Diocese
It was a celebration galore, on Friday, 23rd September 2022, as faithful from the Uyo Catholic Diocese, people from all Christian denominations and walks of life, friends and well wishers, rolled out drums and throng in to the St. Joseph’s Parish, Anua Offot, Uyo, to celebrate with Reverends Leo Anthony Asuquo, Innocent Moses Etim, Anthony Alban Umoren, Louis Nyaknoabasi Williams, Rev. Michael Ita Edet, Lawrence Augustine Ekan and Damian Ebenyi Otto, as they received the Sacrament of Holy Orders, as Priests of the Roman Catholic Church.
The Holy Mass which started at about 9:35am, had over fifty priests in the procession. In his introductory remarks, the Local Ordinary, His Lordship, Most. Rev. Dr. John Ebebe Ayah, thanked God for His numerous blessings and for making the day a reality, he also thanked the faithful for coming out and on time to celebrate with their brothers, the parents of the would be Priests for willingly allowing their children to work in the Lord’s vineyard, and the formators in the seminary, who, over the years, have taken the painstaking efforts of preparing (these) candidates for the Sacred Priesthood.
In his homily, the Bishop thanked God for the gift of the Priesthood, and noted that, the Priests are there to Carter for our spiritual needs and act as mediators between God and man. He begged the faithful to give them the enabling environment to do their work and stressed that, the Priests, too, must be live to their calling and be faithful ministers of the Gospel. The Clergy man also pointed out the Catholic Church has always given premium to the spiritual life of her faithful, and admonished the faithful to hold tenaciously to their faith, despite the trying times.
Ayah, who was feasible enraged by some false claims made by an unknown person about one of the newly ordained Priests, warned the faithful and “whoever cares to listen to desist from the inhumane act of spreading false news about people in an attempt to pull them down”, noting that whoever had any reason why any of the new Priests shouldn’t be ordained would gone to him in confidence, to lay his / claims, and within the stipulated time, following the publication of Bans, doing so as an ‘anonymous’ and few days to the Ordination, makes you a coward, he said.
The Ordination Rites followed the homily.
After the post-communion prayers, the Diocesan Chancellor, Very. Rev. Fr. Charles Ekeng, in the Bishop’s stead, announced the creation of three new Quasi Parishes, and two Autonomous Communities for Uyo Diocese, making it a total of twenty-six places of worship he has created, since his appointment as the Bishop of Uyo Diocese on July 5th, 2014.
This was followed by an address and presentation of gifts by the Uyo Diocesan Laity Council Chairman, Mr. Clement Nkanta.
In his closing remarks, the Bishop thanked the faithful for their roles and supports, in training the Seminarians, and taking good care of the Priests sent to their Parishes, he thanked also, all those who were in attendance to witness the ceremony. He emphasized the need to pray for the priests, as they, too, are humans, and prayed God for journey mercies.
Tu es sacerdos in eternum secundum ordinem Melchizedek