By Regina Igwebuike

Awka, April 12, 2021 (MOI) Auxiliary Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Jonas Benson Okoye says the institution of knighthood has a sacramental implication.

In a Homily on a theme: “Papal Honour, a call to higher responsibility’’, Bishop Okoye emphasised that Papal knighthood was not solely by the recognition of the bishop, rather, it started from Parish via the Bishop who now made recommendation to the Pope.

He listed the functions of Catholic knights to include primarily being faithful to the Catholic Faith; being obedient to the teachings of the Church, Bishop and clergy.

“As faithful Catholics, the Knights foster and develop vocation to the priesthood and Holy matrimony.

“They fight for religious liberty, same sex marriage, homosexuality, lesbianism, abortion and other vices.’’

According to him, a knight must be financially prudent and contributing positively to growth and development of the Church.

Bishop Okoye said the investiture had placed the awardees on a pinnacle, advising them to be active in their respective statutory organisations.

The prelate noted that the awardees were decorated at the time Nigeria was stranded; resident doctors and the judiciary were on strike and the disappointed youths resorted to idolatry.

The Dioceses of Awka, Ekwulobia invested two illustrious sons of Amawbia, Mr Edward Dijeh, Dr Ikem Odumodu and others with Papal Awards.

Mr Dijeh, an Engineer was honoured with the Knights of St. Gregory the Great, while Dr Odumodu was honoured with the Knights of St. Sylvester.

The event took place at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Awka on April 10 with some Bishops, the clergy, the religious and laity from all walks of life in attendance.

The Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese Most Rev. Paulinus Ezeokafor prayed to God to confer on the awardees the gift of the Spirit so that they could remain humble as they serve the Church.

He urged them to provide a platform for motivational speeches to help the youths.

Sir Dijeh on behalf of other awardees thanked God for creating the opportunity for them in spite of their unworthiness. Sen. Victor Umeh, a former National Chairman All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) urged the awardees to be faithful, knowing that having been elevated to this height, the eyes of the public would be on them. (MOI)

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