AUGUST 2019 DIOCESAN CIRCULAR

TO ALL PRIESTS AND RELIGIOUS WORKING IN THE CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF IJEBU-ODE, AND THE LAY FAITHFUL

Dear Brothers and Sisters in the Lord: AUGUST 2019 DIOCESAN CIRCULAR Grace and Peace of the Lord be with you.

1. The month of August: Welcome to the month of August, a month where we commemorate the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is also a month of holidays for our Children as they take a break from the rigours of Academic study. I sincerely hope our Children will make good use of this Holiday time through the monitoring of their parents.

2. Golden Jubilee Celebrations: We thank God for the success of the year-long Golden Jubilee celebrations which culminated in the grand finale last month with the celebration of the 80th birthday and retirement of our Bishop Emeritus, Most Rev. Albert Fasina. We sincerely thank the committee headed by Rev. Fr. John Ashinwo and his team for a wonderful co-ordination of the year-long activities. May God reward you all for the hard work. Now that we have come to the end of the Golden jubilee celebrations, now is the time to begin the post-jubilee celebrations. It is time to put into action the fruits of these celebrations and use it to develop our Diocese. May I remind you of some of the things we need to work on:

  1. The need to get our professionals more involved in the daily running of the parish and institutions.
  2. To pay more attention on the formation of our youths.
  3. To be more actively involved in grassroots evangelization.

3. ANNOUNCEMENTS

i. Special Collections: Let us remember to collect these various special collections for the month of August and ensure that we submit it on time to the Chancery for proper collation. They are: National Conference of Male and Female Religious (August 11); Family and Human Life Apostolate (August 18); Holy Land (August 25).

ii. Priests monthly Recollection: The monthly recollection for all Priests working in Ijebu-ode Diocese will come up on August 13, 2019 at Our Lady of Assumption Catholic Church, Ilado by 10am. All Priests are reminded that this gathering is not optional but mandatory. Only Priests on their annual leave will be exempted from such gathering. The theme for the recollection is “Living each day at a time with Jesus: A spiritual meditation”

iii. Silver Jubilee of Priestly Ordination: Two of our Priests, Rev Fr. Patrick Kunle Balogun and Rev. Fr. Vincent Kayode Ajayi will be celebrating their Silver Jubilee of Priestly Ordination on August 20, 2019. We shall be celebrating them as a Diocese on that same day, Tuesday, August 20, 2019 at St. Sebastian Catholic Cathedral, Odo-Egbo, Ijebu-ode. Let us come and celebrate with them as we thank God for the gift of the Catholic Priesthood.

iv.  Novena in honour of the Assumption of Mary: The Novena in honour of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary will start on August 6, 2019, the feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord till 14th August, 2019. All Parishes and Institutions are expected to organize this Novena and ensure that it is well participated in. We can make use of the last year pamphlet as a guide for this Novena. The Solemnity itself comes up on August 15th, 2019. It is a Holy day of Obligation and we are all encouraged to attend Mass that day.

v.   There shall be a one-day retreat for all Mass servers in the Diocese at St. John Vianney Catholic Church, Iperu on August 11, 2019. This is geared towards having a deeper understanding into what serving at mass entails. I urge that all those concerned should do well to be there.

vi.  Catechesis and Religious Department: The department of Catechesis and Religious Education is inviting all agents of Evangelization (Catechists. Evangelizers, Lay leaders, etc) to a seminar on August 10, 2019 at the Catechetical Center, Ilado starting by 10:00am. Also, there shall be a provincial congress for all agents of evangelization in the Province from August 22-24, 2019 at the Catechetical Center, Ilado, here in Ijebu-ode Diocese. All those concerned should endeavor to attend these activities.

vii.  Family and Human Life Apostolate:

  1. National Family Week Celebration: This will begin on 11th August till 18th August, 2019. It is expected that all Parishes and Institutions will make use of the manual for this family week celebration. It is an opportunity to strengthen the bonds of family life. We urge priests to ensure that this activity is carried out across the Diocese.
  2. Level 2 training of Marriage Counsellors will begin on August 17, 2019 and it is for all commissioned level 1 marriage counsellors. Let us avail ourselves this opportunity to learn more about marriage in the Catholic Church.

viii.  Organizational Meetings:

a. The Catholic Men Organization of Nigeria, Ijebu-ode Diocese will be having their August meeting on August 25, 2019 at St. Mary Catholic Church, Ogbere, starting with Mass by 10:00am. All parishes are expected to be at this meeting and Parish Priests should endeavor to make sure that their parishes are represented in the meeting, as I will be interested in Parishes that will not attend.

b i. The Catholic Women Organization of Nigeria, Ijebu-ode Diocese will be hosting the Provincial General Assembly of the Catholic Women Organization, Lagos Ecclesiastical Province from August 15-18, 2019 at the CWO Maria Center, Ijebu-ode.

ii. Also, the Diocesan General Assembly of the Catholic Women Organization of Nigeria, Ijebu-ode Diocese will hold from August 29- September 1, 2019 at the CWO event center, Ijebu-ode.

c. The Catholic Youth Organization of Nigeria (CYON) will be having a National Youth Seminar from August 7-10, 2019 at Awka Diocese. 3 of our youths from this Diocese will be attending this seminar with their other colleagues within the province. We wish them a safe journey.

ix.   Societal Information:

  1. The International Confederation of the Society of Saint Vincent De Paul, Ijebu­ode Central Council will be hosting Provincial Youth rally of the society from Thursday 8th– Sunday 11th August, 2019 at Louisville Retreat Center, ljebu­Itele. The theme of the rally is “Vincentian Youth, working in unity for Charity.”
  2. The Catholic Charismatic Renewal of Nigeria, Ijebu-ode Diocese will be having a Provincial Leadership training at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Awa­Ilaporu from August 23-24, 2019.

x.   Posting and Appointment: This is to keep us abreast with the latest postings and appointments in the Diocese.

  1. Agbure Parish: Rev. Fr. Januarius Udo Iwuji, SDV has been transferred to St. Thomas Catholic Church, Agbure as Priest-in -charge on a temporary basis. He has already taken residence in the Parish since the departure of the erstwhile Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Christogonus Okoro, SDV, for mission.
  2. Ago-Iwoye Parish: Rev. Fr. Patrick Balogun since his return from sabbatical year has taken residence at St. Michael Catholic Parish as Priest-in-charge on a temporary basis. He takes over from Rev. Fr. Michael Banjo, who was transferred to the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria, Abuja as the Director of Pastoral Affairs since early this year.
  3. Fr. Patrick Balogun has also been appointed as the Dean of Ijebu-lgbo Deanery. We wish them well in this new apostolate and may their ministry among the people of God be fruitful and fulfilled. Amen.

xi.  Transfers:

  1. Sr. Pauline Gaya, OLA has been transferred to Abuja by her Congregation. Sr. Gaya has been in our midst for some years now working at Our Lady of Apostles Secondary School (OLASS). She was the immediate past president of the Nigerian Conference of Women Religious, Ijebu-ode area. We wish her well in her new Apostolate and we thank her for the active years she served in our Diocese.
  2. Sr. Mary Catherine Oke, OSF is on transfer. She worked at Christ the King Catholic College, Odolewu-Ijebu as a teacher for quite a number of years now. She will be replaced by Sr. Mary Anastasia Obatolu, OSF starting from September 1, 2019. We wish Sr. Oke well in her new apostolate and we heartily welcome Sr. Obatolu to our Diocese and wish her a successful stay.
  3. Rev. Fr. Kingsley Odiaka, MSP has completed his tenure with Saint Patrick’s Society (SPS) and he has been transferred to the MSP Seminary at Abuja. We wish him well in this new apostolate.

xii. Priestly Ordination Anniversary: We congratulate and rejoice with our priests working in this Diocese who celebrate their Priestly Ordination Anniversary in this month of August. They are: Rev. Frs. Paul Oredipe, Patrick Balogun, Vincent Ajayi, Stephen Ekerin, Stephen Osinkoya, Hector Osifeko, David-Mary Odunsi, John Patrick Ngoyi, CICM; Innocent Ovie, SDV and Januarius Udo Iwuji, SDV. We wish them happier and fulfilled years ahead in the Lord’s vineyard.

xiii. Bereavement: With gratitude to God we announce the death of an industrious, committed and dedicated Catholic, Engr. Michael Adekunle Afuwape, a parishioner of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Kajola and whose contributions to the growth of the Church in Ijebuland cannot be overlooked. Let us do well to commiserate with the family as they mourn. May God grant him eternal rest. Amen.

Thank you as I wish you a blessed and fruitful month of August.

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