SEPTEMBER 2020 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:

1: The Month of September: Welcome to the ninth month of the year. With the month of September, we come to the end of the 3rd quarter of the year. As the year 2020 gradually comes to an end, let us make out time to examine our lives and journey as Christians. It is a time to take stock on the journey thus far. The Liturgical life of the Church offers us the opportunity of celebrating the following feasts during this month: Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Sept. 8); Exaltation of the Cross (Sept. 14); St. Matthew, Apostle (Sept. 21) and the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael (Sept. 28). As we celebrate these feasts and memorials this month, we reflect on the lives of the saints and draw lessons from them.

2: Pope’s Intention for the month of September 2020: Respect for the Planet’s Resources: We pray this month that the planet’s resources will not be plundered, but shared in a just and respectful manner. Amen.

3: Update on Resumption of Public Masses in the Diocese: Since we have resumed Congregational Mass on Sundays, may I enjoin you all not to get carried away thinking that the dangerous virus- COVID-19 is no longer in existence. Kindly continue to observe all necessary precautions and safety as it pertains to COVID­19 pandemic. The guidelines issued last month are meant to be observed and followed faithfully. Priests are enjoined that the parishes are safe for everyone who comes in for prayers or any liturgical activity.

4: Novena for the month of September: in continuation of the request for a monthly Novena for the intention of our Diocese and indeed the whole world as we battle the pandemics of COVID-19, I invite. you to take up the novena to Saint Michael the Archangel for the month of September. The novena will commence on September 20 — September 28, 2020 in ali Churches, Convents, Houses of Formation, Institutions and families.

5: Ave Maria Pilgrimage Center, Iwopin: During our annual Marian Pilgrimage in February 2020, I made a passionate appeal to all the pilgrims and indeed, to all of us to contribute generously to the renovation of the Ave Maria Pilgrimage Center. As a follow-up to this request, I am pleased to announce to you that a special Bank account dedicated to the Ave Maria Pilgrimage Center is now in operation. I invite you as individuals, families, societies/groups, parishes and stations to support this course of rebuilding our Pilgrimage center with your kind donations. Remember, God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor. 9:7). The account details is as follows:

  • Account Name: Ave Maria Pilgrimage Center, Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode
  • Account Number: 1022812598
  • Bank: United Bank for Africa (UBA)

6: Social Communications Commission invites us to follow the Diocese and her activities, on any of the following social media:

7: Update of Diocesan Directory for 2021: A new directory for the Diocese will be produced before the end of the year. All Parish Priests and Chaplains are to check the 2017 edition and the website www.ijebuodecatholicdiocese.org to see if there are any addition that needs to be made in the new one. Kindly forward your updates or observation to Fr. Augustine Adetola or any member of the Social Communication Commission.

8: ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Diocesan Pastoral Council: The first meeting of the newly constituted Diocesan Pastoral Council will come up on Saturday, 26th September, 2020 at Late Bishop Anthony Saliu Sanusi Hall in St. Sebastian Catholic Cathedral, Ijebu-Ode. The meeting will start at exactly 10:00am with the Holy Mass.
  • Priests Monthly Recollection for September: The Priests’ monthly recollection will take place on Tuesday, September 15, 2020 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Egbe starting at exactly 10:00am. The theme for this month’s recollection is “Pastoral Communication: A recipe for effective pastoral ministry.” All Priests engaged in pastoral work in the Diocese are expected to be present at this prayer gathering.
  • 25th Anniversary of Christ the King Catholic College: The Management, staff and students of Christ the King Catholic College, Odolewu-Ijebu will be celebrating 25 years of existence of the College on September 8, 2020 at the College Auditorium in School compound. The celebration will start with the Holy Mass by 10:00am. Due to the rules concerning gathering during COVID­19 pandemic, attendance will be strictly by invitation. Let us continue to pray for the growth of the school and all who worked tirelessly for the development of the Institution.
  • Visitation of the Bishop to Diocesan Secondary Schools: As part of the Bishop’s ongoing Pastoral Visitation to Parishes and Institutions within the Diocese, the Bishop will be an official visitation to all Diocesan owned Secondary Schools in the month of September. The purpose of this visit is for the Bishop to have an interaction with the management and staff of the various institutions and chart a good course moving forward. The meeting is scheduled to take place as follow:
  • Diocesan Pastoral Council: The first meeting of the newly constituted Diocesan Pastoral Council will come up on Saturday, 26th September, 2020 at Late Bishop Anthony Saliu Sanusi Hall in St. Sebastian Catholic Cathedral, Ijebu-Ode. The meeting will start at exactly 10:00am with the Holy Mass.
  • Priests Monthly Recollection for September: The Priests’ monthly recollection will take place on Tuesday, September 15, 2020 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Egbe starting at exactly 10:00am. The theme for this month’s recollection is “Pastoral Communication: A recipe for effective pastoral ministry.” All Priests engaged in pastoral work in the Diocese are expected to be present at this prayer gathering.
  • 25th Anniversary of Christ the King Catholic College: The Management, staff and students of Christ the King Catholic College, Odolewu-Ijebu will be celebrating 25 years of existence of the College on September 8, 2020 at the College Auditorium in School compound. The celebration will start with the Holy Mass by 10:00am. Due to the rules concerning gathering during COVID­19 pandemic, attendance will be strictly by invitation. Let us continue to pray for the growth of the school and all who worked tirelessly for the development of the Institution.
  • Visitation of the Bishop to Diocesan Secondary Schools: As part of the Bishop’s ongoing Pastoral Visitation to Parishes and Institutions within the Diocese, the Bishop will be an official visitation to all Diocesan owned Secondary Schools in the month of September. The purpose of this visit is for the Bishop to have an interaction with the management and staff of the various institutions and chart a good course moving forward. The meeting is scheduled to take place as follow:
    • Christ the King Catholic College  – Tuesday, September 1, 2020
    • Saint Anthony Secondary School (Private) – Friday, September 4, 2020
    • OLASS (Private) – Monday, September 7, 2020
    • Sacred Heart Catholic College – Wednesday, September 9, 2020

The meeting will begin at exactly 10:00am with the celebration of the Holy Mass at the various schools.

  • Submission of 2020 Report: This is to inform all Heads of Department, Institutions and Presidents of various Organizations like CMO, CWO, CYON and HCA that there will be need to submit a comprehensive report of activities done in the year 2020. This report is expected to be detailed containing the summary of what was done and pictures to back it up. It will be submitted both in printed copies and soft copies to the office of the Bishop through his Secretary on or before December 10, 2020. This is an obligatory annual report and all those concerned should take note.
  • Family and Human Life Department: Diocesan training of Marriage Counsellors (Family and Human Life Facilitators) resumes on Saturday, September 19, 2020. For those in Level one, the venue of the gathering will be at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Oda-Aye; while for those in level two, the venue will be at St. Anthony Catholic Church, Ejinrin Road. Time is 10:00am.
  • Appreciation: We thank God for the successful celebration of the 75th birthday of Msgr. Gabriel Ayankoya. We are equally grateful to all Parishioners of St. Anthony Catholic Church, Sagamu and indeed the entire Diocese for the celebration given to him. May God continue to grant him good health of mind and body even in his retirement. Amen.
  • 70th Birthday Celebration of Very Rev. Msgr. Victor Olufemi Ajayi: The Diocese congratulates and rejoices with Msgr. Victor Ajayi, the Dean of Sagamu Deanery as he will be celebrating 70 years on earth. We wish him good health of mind and body while appreciating the numerous work he has done in the Diocese. The celebration will take place on Friday, September 11, 2020 at Holy Family Catholic Church, GRA. The Mass will start at exactly 10:00am.
  • New Episcopal Vicars for the Catholic Diocese of Ijebu-Ode: The names of the newly appointed Vicars and their offices are:
    • Very Rev. Fr. Martin-Rita Ogunbanwo — Vicar for Clergy
    • Very Rev. Fr. Patrick Balogun — Vicar for Pastoral Affairs
    • Very Rev. Fr. Michael Banjo — Vicar for Judicial matters
    • Very Rev. Fr. Lawrence Alabi, CSSp — Vicar for Religious
    • Very Rev. Fr. Uche Okocha — Vicar for Land and Properties
    • Very Rev. Fr. Albert Igbodipe — Diocesan Chancellor
  • Transfers/Postings: We thank and appreciate the following Priests and Religious who will be leaving our Diocese for another mission elsewhere. They are:
    • Very Rev. Fr. Vincent Ajayi — Sabbatical Year
    • Rev. Fr. Simon Mayungbe — To Study Psycho-Spiritual Therapy at Lux Terra Leadership Foundation, Kenya
    • Sr. Jacinta Nwaigwe, EHJ; Sr. Jane Onyinlo, EHJ; Sr. Evarista Onaefe, EHJ; Sr. Roseline Ogunbanwo, SSL and Sr. Cordelia Ogene, OLA. We wish our Priests and Sisters well in their new mission.

We welcome to the diocese the following Religious: Sr. Patricia Opara, EHJ; Sr. AgnesMary Oguntoyinbo, EHJ; Sr. Anna Maria Ajibola, EHJ; Sr. Juliana Egbeleke, SSL; Sr. Isabel Mann, SSL and Sr. Angela Ogu, SSL. We wish them a happy and fruitful stay in the Diocese. Amen.

  • Priestly Ordination Anniversary: We congratulate, rejoice and request your prayers for Most Rev. Albert Ayinde Fasina as he celebrates his 32nd Episcopal Ordination Anniversary on September 10, 2020. We request your prayers for Rev. Frs. Useni Gabriel, CMF (Sept. 2) Michael Mary Chiaha (Sept. 5); Sabinus Orji (Sept. 5); Emmanuel Nwafor (Sept. 5); Daniel Ogunsanya (Sept. 8); Anthony Abdullahi (Sept. 8) and John Bankole, SDB (Sept. 9) whose Priestly Ordination Anniversaries occur this month. May God grant them fulfillment and grace of final perseverance. Ad Multos Annos!

Thank you as I wish you a blessed and fruitful month of September. May God heal our land.

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