By Ononye VC
Emotions overflowed last Sunday,during mass, when the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity Parish family members,Onitsha, led by the Rector,Very Rev Fr Francis Nwokedi Ezumezu,bade farewell to three of the priests who served in the parish with different portfolios and were set to fly abroad for further studies courtesy of the Metropolitan Archbishop of Onitsha, Most Rev Valerian Okeke.
The Archbishop was represented by his Secretary, Rev Fr Kevin Chukwuka.
Names of the priests are,Rev Frs Benjamin Ogbunuko,Stephen Ifeanyi and Collins Ogbogu.
Two of the priests Rev Frs Benjamin Ogbunuko and Stephen Ifeanyi celebrated the 10:30am valedictory mass while Rev Fr Collins Ogbogu celebrated 7am mass.
The Basilica Parish Council read a farewell address wherein the priests were eulogised and thanked profusely for their contributions towards growth of the Parish in various ways.
Gifts were presented to the priests in appreciation of their contributions.
It would be recalled that the priests handled different portfolios which they gave good account of themselves.
Apart from their normal priestly duties,they were known to have mentored many youths and improved the welfare of the faithful.
For instance, Fr Benjamin Ogbunuko was the manager,Oluchukwu Oil and Gas Station and also worked at the Radio Sapientia, Onitsha.
He also served as the Chief Press Secretary to the Archbishop among other duties.His warmness and cordial relationship with Onitsha Journalists would greatly be missed.
Fr Stephen Ifeanyi was the Manager,Trinity Group of Schools.He made tremendous impact on education and oversaw the building of the huge Trinity Secondary School Complex,Onitsha.
Under his care,the school grew in leaps and bounds and won many academic laurels.
He also steered the ship of the famous Archbishop Valerian Okeke Music Academy (AVOMA) where many youths discovered their talents and were trained in music and dancing skill.Fr Ifeanyi takes credit for the massive AVOMA complex after the Archbishop.
Fr Collins Ogbogu was the Assistant Secretary to the Archbishop. He combined this onerous task with his position as the Chaplain of the Federal Government College,Onitsha.
His presence at the College impacted positively on the students morally.
The Basilica family will miss their companion.
May God grant them journey mercies and also grant them their heart desires so that at the conclusion of their journey,they will return home with great accomplishments.Bon voyage.