By Sylvester Igwesi
The dedication ceremony of the Ultramodern Magnificent World Class, St. Rita Catholic Chaplaincy Chapel, Enugu State University Teaching Hospital, Parklane, Enugu, started after handing over of the Keys of the edifice to the Catholic Bishop of Enugu Diocese, His Lordship, Most Rev. Dr. C.V.C Onaga.
The Keys were handed over to the bishop by Prof. Aloysius Okolie, Vice Chancelor (VC); Enugu State University of Technology (ESUT). Trinitas that witnessed the dedication ceremony gathered that the bishop also handed the Keys of the State –of – the art edifice, to the Chaplain of the Chaplaincy, Rev. Fr. Clement Okonkwo, and noted that the Chaplain will give account to him (Bishop), while he give account to the supreme potiff (Pope). There was also blessing of the Grotto of our mother of perpetual help and reception of the sacrament of confirmation.
Delivering sermon, Dr. Onaga noted that Jesus Christ mandated the Church to cure the sick (see Math. 10:-1-10) and also preach the good new to the sick. Speaking further, he noted that one of the fundamental missions of the Church is hospital. The Chaplain is to take care of the spiritual needs of the sick in the hospital, and to serve the patients and the workers. The bishop commended the faith of the VC; Provost and medical doctors, he charged the doctors to anchor on God in their medical Profession and also charged the sick to always go to the Chapel and tell God to cure him or her. On the rite of confirmation, the bishop examined the candidates and found them worthy; he therefore administered the sacrament of confirmation on those prepared for it.
The confirmation candidates were about 50 in number, some of them are students of Enugu State University College of Medicine (ESUCOM). On the dedication Prayer, the bishop prayed thus; may this building which we dedicate to God’s name, be a house of Salvation and grace where Christians gathered in fellowship, and Worship God in spirit and truth and also grow in Love.
Our correspondent gathered that there was installation of blessed sacrament in the gold tabanacle in the newly dedicated Chapel. The Provost, Enugu State University College of Medicine, Prof. Frank Ezugwu, in his speech, expressed joy that the journey that Started in the year 2015 has been completed, and noted that he is proud of the Chaplain. The Provost also paid glowing tributes to all those that were always at the forefront in all fund raising activities of the chaplaincy.
The secretary of the chaplaincy, Miss Lydia Mgbachi on her Welcome address, stated that Nigeria Federation of Catholic Students, ESUT Parklane was created in the year 2001 and they have been celebrating masses in an unconducive places before now. She commended alumni members for their support. The chaplain of St. Rita Catholic Chaplaincy, Rev. Fr. Okonkwo in his vote of thanks, doffed his cap for the bishop, Priests, men and women religious, and lay faithful. He also commended the committee that planned and executed the great event.
In an interview with the past chaplains of the Chaplaincy, Very Rev. Fr. Dr. Theo Nwodo and Very Rev. Fr. Dr. Nnamdi Nwankwo in their separate interview, said both the past/current chaplains, members of the chaplaincy, friends and well wishers of the chaplaincy are celebrating what they labored for. While Dr. Nwankwo noted that maintenance of structure is more serious than building new one. Dr. Nwankwo is also the Rector; Enugu State polytechnic, Iwolo Community in Ezeagu LGA and also a Senior Lecturer, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, department of Philosophy; While Dr. Nwodo is a senior lecturer, Godfrey Okoye University, Catholic Diocese of Enugu.