Monthly Bulletin /Circular   –    MARCH, 2022 /032

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

Grace and Peace of the Lord be with you.

  1. The Month of March: We thank God for the grace to witness this New Month of March, 2022. This month is a special one in the Church as it ushers us into the Season of Lent. The Season of Lent begins with ASH WEDNESDAY (March 2) and ends with Good Friday (April 15). “The annual observation of Lent is the special season for the ascent to the holy mountain of Easter. Through its two-fold theme of repentance and baptism, the season of Lent disposes both Catechumens and the Faithful to celebrate the Paschal mystery.” (Ceremonial of Bishop, 249).  

NB: In the Masses of the Season, the Gloria is omitted, Alleluia is omitted in all Masses, Altar is not decorated with flowers during Lent. Musical Instruments are not used except on Laetare Sunday and for Solemnities and feasts.  

In this Season, we shall embark on a spiritual journey of renewal through PRAYER, ABSTINENCE and ALMSGIVING. The Liturgical color of this season is violet which portrays the penitential and repentant nature of the season. I therefore, invite us to make good use of this opportunity the Church is offering us to grow spiritually in our relationship with God. Also, in this month, we shall be celebrating the Solemnity of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary (March 19) and the Solemnity of the Annunciation (March 25).  

  • Pope’s Intention for the month of March 2022: FOR A CHRISTIAN RESPONSE TO BIOETHICAL CHALLENGES: Let us remember to pray for Christians facing new bioethical challenges that they may continue to defend the dignity of all human life with prayer and action.
  • Bishop’s Intention for the month of March 2022: FOR A SINCERE APPRECIATION OF THE SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION: Let us pray that we may experience the sacrament of reconciliation with renewed depth, to taste the infinite mercy of God in this season of Lent.  
  • 2022 Lenten Reflection: We shall have the opportunity to listen to spiritual and edifying Lenten reflections from the Bishop and Priests working in the Diocese each day of

Lent. The Social Communications Commission of the Diocese shall ensure that these daily reflections are aired on the following social media handles: YouTube: Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode Nigeria

Facebook: “I-partner Ijebu-ode” and “The Partner Newspaper”  

Website: www.ijebuodecatholicdiocese.org 

Kindly log in to any of these platforms to listen to daily inspiring messages for your spiritual nourishment.

  • Diocesan Monthly Novena Prayer: Our monthly novena prayer for the intention of our Diocese and our world for the month of March shall be the Novena to St. Joseph. It shall begin on March 10th to 18th, in preparation for the Solemnity of St. Joseph, the patron of the Universal Church (March 19). All Parish Priests, Superiors and Chaplains are to kindly ensure that this novena prayer is said in all Parishes, schools, convents and houses of formation across the Diocese.
  • USA Mission Promotion Office: After due consultations and prayerful discernment, the USA Mission Promotion Office in Baltimore is hereby suspended (2nd February,2022) until further notice. The former director of Mission, Fr. Albert Adeleke seeks dispensation from the priestly obligations. He is expected to vacate the mission office not later than the 31st of March, 2022. Let us pray for him as he goes through this moment of transition.
  • Suppressed Order of Little Lamb of the Cross: The Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode organizes an integration formation programme for the clerical members of the suppressed Order of Little Lamb of the Cross at Missionary Societies of St. Paul, MSP, Iperu-Remo. This programme which started on 26th February, 2022, will last for a period of one year.  Rev. Fr. Michael Adebanjo, vicar for Clergy and a team of Formators have been appointed to handle the integration programme. Kindly support them with your prayers and encouragement.  
  • Diocesan Prayer Crusade for Priests and Religious: This is a reminder to the appeal to families within our Diocese to adopt a Priest/Religious for prayer throughout the Year 2022. A family that is within our Diocese, may freely choose and adopt a Priest whom they would be praying for on daily basis throughout this year. Let us all remember to pray for our Priests and Religious daily. 
  • Ave Maria Pilgrimage Centre, Iwopin: We continue to solicit your generous support towards the renovation of the Ave Maria Pilgrimage Centre, Iwopin. I am pleased to inform you that we have begun serious work on the site and we need a lot of money to sustain this project.  We sincerely appreciate all those who have contributed generously towards this project as we wish to appeal to individuals, families, societies, parishes and stations who are yet, to support this project of rebuilding a Pilgrimage Centre for the Blessed Virgin Mary in our Diocese with your kind donations. Remember, God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor. 9:7). The account details are as follows: 

Account Name: Ave Maria Pilgrimage Center, Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode 

Account Number: 1022812598 

Bank: United Bank for Africa (UBA) 

  1. Construction of a Diocesan Chancery Building: The building of our Diocesan Chancery is ongoing and we have made great progress. We therefore, continue to humbly appeal to Parishes, Institutions, families and benefactors, within and outside the Diocese, who are yet to make their contributions, to financially support this project. We recognize and acknowledge all the contributions and donations already received. May God continue to reward and replenish all our benefactors abundantly.  

To support this project of building a befitting Chancery for the Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode, kindly make your donation(s) to the following Bank Account:

Account Name: Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode 

Account Number: 0131027016 

Bank: FCMB 

  1. ANNOUNCEMENTS 

Appreciation: This is to acknowledge and appreciate the Pastoral Department and all the Deaneries of our Diocese for a wonderful and successful planning and organization of the Annual Marian Pilgrimage that was done on Deanery level this year. Thank you to all the Priests and lay ministers who were actively involved in the execution of this programme. May the Blessed Virgin Mary, Comforter of the afflicted continue to comfort and intercede for us in our distress. Amen.

  1. Special Collection:  

Lenten Appeal: In this season of Lent, special collection is to be taken every Sunday and during the Stations of the Cross, starting from 2nd March – 15th April, 2022.

Priests should kindly ensure that this collection is well publicized, collected and remitted to the Chancery on time for proper collation.

  1. Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate heart of Mary Association:  The Diocese shall be hosting the Lagos Ecclesiastical Provincial Council Lenten Retreat of this Association on 4th to 5th March, 2022, at City of Immaculate Marian Shrine, Sagamu.   

Let us endeavor to attend this spiritual programme for our spiritual growth.

  1. 2022 CBCN First Plenary Meeting: The first Plenary Meeting of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria will hold in Abuja from 5th – 11th March, 2022. Kindly pray for a successful deliberation on the life of the Church and Society.
  1. Priests’ Annual Retreat: All Priests working in the Diocese will be on their annual retreat of the year 2022 from March 7th – 11th, 2022, at Abbe-Louis Bautain Retreat and Conference Centre, Ijebu-Itele with Very Rev. Msgr. (Prof) Joseph FANIRAN from the Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA) as the Retreat Director.
  • NCWR Lenten Retreat: The Lenten Retreat of the Nigeria Conference of Women Religious, Ijebu-Ode Area will come up on Saturday, 5th March, 2022 at Passionist Sisters Community, Idomila, Ijebu-Ode by 10am. All members should take note.
  • Holy Childhood Association: The following activities of the HCA will take place this month:
    • Lenten Retreat for the Children in all Parishes on March 5, 2022. This should be coordinated by the Animators in various parishes.
    • HCA Animation visit to St. Timothy Catholic Church, Degun on March, 19/20, 2022
    • HCA Animation visit to St. Patrick Catholic Church, Ikija on March 26/27, 2022
  • Department of Catechesis and Religious Education: This month’s training programme of Catechists shall come up on March 12, 2022 at the Catechetical Centre, Motubo, Ijebu-Ode at 11.00a.m.

There shall be Lenten Recollection for all Agents of Evangelization in the Diocese on 19th March, 2022 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Kajola. Also, the Department will be having their general meeting of all Agents of Evangelization with DRE/Catechists commission on the same day after the Recollection.

The Department is organizing a Seminar for all Sunday School Teachers on 26th March, 2022 at St. Anthony Catholic Church, Ayegbami, Sagamu.

All concerned should endeavor to be punctual.

  • Family and Human Life Apostolate: The general meeting of the facilitators of the Family and Human Life department of the Diocese will hold on Saturday, 12th March, 2022 at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Odo-Aye. The Level One Training of Marriage Counsellors will take place on Saturday, 19th March, 2022 at Most Pure Heart Catholic Church, Esure.
  1. Organizational Groups:  
  1. CYONIO:   
    1. The Diocesan CYON General Meeting shall take place on March 12, 2022, at St. Michael Catholic Church, Ilisan. 
  • The Diocesan Executives of the CYON shall be visiting all parishes in Iloti Deanery this month. I hereby appeal to all Parishes concerned to accord them the necessary hospitality and support.  
  • The Football competition in Honour of Bishop Francis Adesina which started 20th February, 2022, is on-going, let us encourage and support our youths as they participate in this social exercise, which is aimed at strengthening the bond and fraternity among our youths in the Diocese.  
  • CWONIO: The second Diocesan Meeting of the CWON shall come up on March 20, 2022, at St. Timothy Catholic Church, Degun, Ijebu-Ode. It shall begin immediately after 10.a.m Mass.  
  • CMONIO: The Catholic Men Organization of Nigeria, Ijebu-Ode Diocese shall be having their second General Meeting of the year on 27th March, 2022 at St. John Vianney Catholic Church, Iperu.

All concerned should take note and be punctual.

  • Lay Apostolates Department: This year’s Laity Week will begin on March 13 to 20, 2022, with the theme: Resilience in Witnessing for Christ amidst Socio-economic and Security Challenges. This is to be celebrated in all Parishes across the Diocese.   

Also, the Department shall embark on a familiarization visit to societies, Laity groups and associations in the Diocese. All Parishes without a Laity Council should constitute and inaugurate one on or before 31st March, 2022.

  • Diocesan Pastoral Council Meeting: The first meeting of the DPC for the year 2022 shall come up on Saturday, 26th March, 2022, at Bishop Anthony Saliu Sanusi Memorial Hall of St. Sebastian Catholic Cathedral by 10:00am. All those concerned should be punctual.  
  • NCDPA Provincial Meeting: The Diocese shall be hosting the meeting of the Nigerian Catholic Diocesan Priests Association of Lagos Ecclesiastical Province on 29th March, 2022 at St. Sebastian Catholic Cathedral, Odo-Egbo. It shall begin with the celebration of the Holy Mass at exactly 11.a.m. Let us pray for a successful meeting and deliberations.
  • Education Department: Our Schools (Primary and Secondary) shall be going on Vacation for second term on 1st April, 2022. All Heads of Schools, Staff, Parents and students should be reminded of this date.
  • Priestly Ordination Anniversary: We congratulate, rejoice with and request your prayers for Msgr. Victor Ajayi (March 8), Frs. Kennedy Ukachi, SMM (March 17), Francis Okposio, SMM (March 17), John Benedict Mary Ubuane, FI (March 24), Gabriel Udogu, FI (March 25), Vincent Michael Egbu, FI (March 25), and John Aruleba (March 28) as they celebrate their Priestly Ordination Anniversary this month. May God grant them fulfillment and the grace of final perseverance. Amen.

Most Rev. Francis Obafemi ADESINA

Bishop of Ijebu-ode Diocese.

Click here to download the circular for the month of March

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