25 August 2016
By Sr. Ann Schulte, SHCJ
On Saturday 13th August, 2016, there was an air of expectation as a group of sisters and family members walked from Holy Child College to St. Gregory College’s beautiful new Chapel.
A rousing hymn from Dodan Baracks choir, Lagos accompanied the SHCJ sisters with the two candidates for final vows, Sisters Assumpta Okoli and Juliana Omudu.
Also, the Silver Jubilaria, Sr. Ngozi Elizabeth Njoku, the congregation with parishioners from Falomo, Ajegunle, St. Mary’s Lagos and St Mary’s Otukpo, a group from Oghara Delta State received blessings from the three concelebrating Archbishop and Bishops, His Grace, Most Rev. Dr. Alfred Adewale Martins, Archbishop of Lagos, His Lordship, Most Rev. Bulus Yohanna, Bishop of Kontagora Vicariate and Most Rev. Stephen Dami Mamza, Bishop of Yola Diocese, Nigeria.
The sanctuary was also filled with Priests from the different parishes including a priest from the National Catholic Secretariat in Accra. All had come to celebrate with the two sisters making perpetual profession of vows, and the Silver Jubilarian.
A moving moment in the liturgy was after the sisters had pronounced their final vows and these had been received by the Society leader, Sr. Veronica Openibo, all the finally professed SHCJ sisters went up to make a covenant , bringing the two new members into their covenant relationship, of support of one another for the rest of their lives.
With enthusiastic singing from the choir and the congregation, all danced up in thanksgiving, bringing the first part of the celebration to an end.
We made our way to Holy Child College hall. There the families of the sisters celebrating had special tables arranged for them. Lively traditional dancers entertained us from Otukpo, Igboland and Ajegunle.
Part 3 began at 8 p.m. with the sisters and families having an evening of joyful and relaxed entertainment with plenty of dancing depicting the different cultures we live and work in Africa. Next morning was departures for family members and friends while all the sisters stayed on for the Post Chapter Assembly.