July 25, 2024
News Nigeria

11 Nigerian priests commissioned for mission in Europe, America 

In a missioning Mass to conclude the 2024 Mission Orientation program, 11 Nigerian priests across 5 Catholic dioceses in Nigeria have been commissioned for missionary work to some countries in Europe and America. 

The 2024 Mission Orientation program, which started on Tuesday, June 11, and ended with the missioning Mass on Sunday, June 16, 2024, was organized by the Department of Mission and Dialogue, Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria (CSN). It is a preparation and sensitization course for Nigerian missionaries going out on mission to other countries. 

In his homily at the Mass, the Secretary General of CSN, Rev. Fr. Zachariah Nyantiso Samjumi, who celebrated the Mass on behalf of the Episcopal Chairman, Mission and Dialogue, Most Rev. Stephen Mamza, stated that Jesus, during his earthly ministry, focused on revealing the mystery of the kingdom to mankind. He added that the presence of love, justice, and mercy are the definitive characteristics of the kingdom of God, which was clearly seen in the mission of Christ on earth. 

“Jesus, in starting his ministry on earth, wanted us to understand his mission, which was to establish the kingdom of God. So, for us to understand the message of today, we must clearly understand the kingdom of God, which is the presence of love, justice, and mercy. All these are attributes clearly found in the kingdom of God. Our duty therefore is to bring about justice, mercy, and love, which are qualities of the kingdom. So, little things matter; small things matter, not necessarily the big and glamorous things. Let us then make sure that in all our dealings in life, we must ensure a reign of love, mercy, and justice.”

In his remark at the Mass, the Secretary General called on the missionaries to count themselves lucky to have undergone the orientation program before embarking on their missionary assignment. He emphasized that the program will expose them to the realities of the missionary work, especially in places like Europe and America, and added that the situation over there is very different from what we have in Nigeria.

Advising the missionaries to remain good witnesses to the fact that the Church is alive in Africa and that the kingdom of God will not diminish but will continue to grow, Fr. Samjumi, who presided over the commissioning rite, prayed God to bless the efforts and vocation of the missionaries and to see them through in their various places of assignments. 

The Director, Department of Mission and Dialogue, CSN, Rev. Fr. Joseph Nomhwange, SMA, in his remark at the Mass, appreciated the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) for organizing a wonderful program like this to help missionaries who are going out on mission. He also appreciated the Secretary General for his immeasurable support and encouragement and acknowledged the smooth collaboration and cooperation of Fr. Lawrence Emehel and Mrs. Cecilia Agada in the department. 

Further praying that the Holy Spirit should guide, strengthen, and enlighten the eleven missionaries in their respective fields of the missionary engagement, Fr. Nomhwange disclosed that their presence and the work they will be doing over there will be a great witness and a testament to the growth of the Church here in Nigeria. He also explained that even though missionaries from Europe had traveled down here many years ago to bring the gospel message to Africa, there is now a more serious need for them to hear the gospel message again.

The eleven commissioned missionaries are: Rev. Fr. Terence Egwaogie from Auchi Diocese, going on mission to Austria; Rev. Fr. Jude Mbotepi, Rev. Fr. Anacletus Ndari, and Rev. Fr. Ferdinand Hayi John from Yola Diocese, all going on mission to the United States of America; and Rev. Fr. Sansu Abraham, still from Yola Diocese, going on mission to Italy. Also, Rev. Fr. Eric Enenche Agbara and Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Ojoko from Otukpo Diocese are going on mission to the United Kingdom and Italy, respectively, and Rev. Fr. Sunday Yunana Waraka from Bauchi Diocese is going on mission to the United States of America. Also, those who are yet to be given places of missionary assignment are Rev. Fr. Rev. Fr. Albert Osunlaja, Rev. Fr. Anthony Abdullahi from Ijebu-Ode Diocese, and Rev. Fr. JohnDuke Akowe from Auchi Diocese. 

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