SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2011.
DIOCESE OF AHOADA, OKRIKA, KNIGHTS OF NNEWI RETREATS AT IBRU CENTRE
REV. CANON GABRIEL KPAGBAN
The Diocese of Ahoada, the Nnewi Diocesean Council of Knights and Diocese of Okrika held their various retreats in the month of August at the Ibru International Ecumenical Centre, Agbarha-Otor, Delta State.
The retreats which were all held between 15th and 27th August had “A Living Sacrifice”, “Righteousness exalts a nation” and “A Vessel of Honour” as their themes respectively.
The Diocese of Ahoada which held its retreat from 15th to 19th August took its theme from the book of Romans 12: 1&2. The retreat was officially opened by the Diocesan Bishop, Rt. Rev. C. N. Ekpeye who spoke on the need for clergymen to continue to study the word of God and pray for the leading of the Holy Spirit. He encouraged clergy to focus on the things that would build up their congregation.
On the other hand, the Nnewi Diocesan Council of Knights held their retreat from 18th to 21st August and was led by the President of Council of Knights, Engr. Chukwemeka Nzavi, while the Bishop of Anglican Diocese of Oru, Rt. Rev. (Dr.) Geoffrey Chukwunenye was their keynote speaker. Over seventy-eight (78) Knights from Nnewi, Abuja and Lagos attended the retreat.
While the clergy and wives of the Diocese of Okrika (Anglican Communion) held their retreat from 22nd to 27th August, and the opening charge was given by the Lord Bishop of the Diocese, Rt. Rev. Tubokoseimie R. Abere in line with the theme and he declared the retreat open.
There were different lectures sessions at these various retreats and most of these lectures were related and reflect the themes of these retreats.
The Knights of Nnewi included a business session during their retreat which was used to review their activities from the eyes of the motto of the diocese, the vision statement of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) and lessons were drawn from the life of St. Christopher. They expressed satisfaction on the progress made so far.
The Chaplain of the Centre, Rev. Canon Gabriel Kpagban during a Holy Communion Service charged the retreatants on the need to live a righteous life. He said it is good to defend the cause of the downtrodden in the society and to remember the poor.
The Diocese of Ahoada used this medium to call on prosperous Christians to emulate the vision of Dr. Alex Ibru by providing a place such as the retreat centre. They also condemned the menace of Boko Haram and call on Nigerians to embrace national unity through sacrifice.
Also, the clergy and wives of the Diocese of Okrika (Anglican Communion) called on leaders at all levels, both in the church and the nation as a whole to be vessels of honour so that her citizens can enjoy the dividends of democracy.
As a result of the success of all the retreats, each group showed gratitude to their organizers, sponsors and participants for the success of these retreats.
Dr. Alex Ibru was greatly appreciated for providing a place like the Ibru Centre where retreats take place while the staff and management of the centre were also appreciated for their hospitality and support during these retreats.
Meanwhile, the Diocese of Ahoada showed appreciation and desire to make the retreat to be an annual event.