Last Friday, Obudu stood still when it played host to a large gathering of Catholic faithfuls and non-Catholics who came from different nooks and crannies to pay homage and join in the triple celebrations in honour of the first Roman Catholic priest of Obudu extraction, Rev. Fr. (Dr) Atemgweye Unimna.
At the St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, Obudu, venue of the ceremony, Fr. Unimna told the packed church that he was grateful to God for granting him the grace to celebrate his 66th birthday, 40th anniversary as a Catholic priest and his retirement from the services of the Cross River State College of Education, having served in the institution as a lecturer.
In a homily at the occasion, drawing largely from Luke’s gospel, 4:16-21, Rt. Rev. Monsignor Cletus Tanimu Gotan of the Catholic Diocese of Markurdi, thanked God for giving Fr. Unimna the strength in the last 40 years to work in His vineyard and extolled the virtues of the celebrant who he said has demonstrated over the years that his vocation is a good one. Fr. Gotan enjoined priests, religious and the laity to be tireless in bringing the Good News to the world.
Speaking earlier to calitown.com, Fr. Unimna said “to God I give all the glory, He blessed my vocation, guided me, gave me good health and kept me thus far”. He added that, “priests, the religious and the laity need to understand that we must continue to push on so that we will take the Word of God to all corners of the earth”.
Present at the well attended occasion were more than 70 priest and religious, four bishops including the local ordinary, Bishop John Ayah and Joseph Ukpo, Archbishop emeritus of the Calabar Metropolitan See.
Unimna was born on November 30, 1947 in Ukwel-Obudu, Obudu LGA and attended school there before proceeding to Mary Knoll College, Ogoja. He trained for the priesthood in Bigard Memorial Seminary Enugu and St. Augustine Major Seminary in Jos, Plateau State, respectively and was ordained the very first priest of Obudu extraction on December 15, 1973. He is the author of the rhapsodic “66-26: My Journey into the Priesthood”, “a summary of the agony and ecstasy that have characterised the forty years of his Priestly life and Ministry”.
Please make a donation to the St. Joseph Centre For The Visually Handicapped, Obudu, CRS. You can call Rev. Sr. Rose Abang on 08035970495, 08053363221 for details on how you can make a donation.
© 2013, Admin. All rights reserved.