By Fr. Anthony Adetayo

It was an inevitable reality that the Bishop of Ijebu-Ode Diocese, Most Rev. Francis Obafemi Adesina would finally meet the newly crowned king of Ijebu-Igbo dynasty, HRH Oba Lawrence Jaiyeoba Adebajo. It was a gracious ceremony as the Bishop was led to the king’s abode at Ijebu-Igbo in the morning of March 30th 2022. The cohort of the Bishop at this visitation were Very Rev. Fr. Albert Igbodipe, (Diocesan Chancellor); Very Rev. Fr. Patrick Balogun, (Vicar for Pastoral); Very Rev. Fr. Matuluko Emmanuel, (Chaplain to Traditional rulers); Rev. Fr. Gabriel-Marie Udogu F.I (Parish Priest); Fr. James Igwe and Fr. Anthony Adetayo, (Director of Social Communications).

Very Rev. Fr. Patrick Balogun directed the ceremony by introducing the importance and significance of the visitation as Fr. Matuluko gave the opening prayer. The Bishop greeted the Kabiyesi while the Kabiyesi welcomed the Bishop.  The Bishop reiterates the fact that the Catholic Rite of installation of Oba was firstly done in the whole South Western Nigeria by the Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode with the installation of the new Orimolusi of Ijebu-Igbo. He regrets his unavoidable absence at that ceremony which took place on Wednesday 23rd February 2022 but gives God the thanks because the Metropolitan of Lagos Archdiocese, Most Rev. Alfred Adewale Martins was available for the installation.

The Kabiyesi then appreciates the Bishop, the Archbishop of Lagos, the entire priests present and the entire Catholic faithful in Ijebu-Ode Diocese. He narrated his unwillingness to become the king of Ijebu-Igbo  and the various efforts he made to avoid the Obaship even to the level of signing a written agreement with his elder brother that he would not contest for Obaship. But as God would have it, the lot fell on him and the government confirmed his Obaship to the cheers of the people of Ijebu-Igbo.

The CWO members and Laity present at the ceremony led in soul-touching worship songs and everyone praised God with gracious words and in choruses.

Being a firm and ardent Catholic, the Oba asked for the blessing of the Bishop. The Bishop blessed some sacramental items, the Kingdom and the Oba together with his Olori. It was concluded by exchange of further pleasantries and taking of group photographs.

It shows clearly how the Church reaches to everybody irrespective of your faith and tradition. More importantly, it is a sign that Ijebu-Igbo community will see more of the light of Christ.

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