Jubilation As St. Martins, Ihiala Marks 11/11, Patton Saint’s Day


It was jubilation galllore for parishioners of St Martin of Tours, Odoata, Ihiala, when they trooped out in their numbers to celebrate their Patron Saint Feast Day on Sunday, 12th November, 2023.

The feast day usually holds on 11th November of every year. It is a day every Ihiala man looks forward to as the day is popularly known as 11/ 11.

This year’s celebration started with a Holy Mass held at the parish Pro Cathedral. The church was filled to capacity with galaxy of colours.

Other activities lined up for the celebration kicked off immediately after the Mass. The chairman of the occasion, Chief Theodore Chukwunedum, in his opening remark, noted with joy the response of people to invitation to be part of this year’s celebration. He praised the lay faithful for not allowing their faith to fade away, not minding that for more than one year, they were deprived of the sacraments.

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He prayed God to grant the authorities of the Vatican, the wisdom to resolve the tripartite dispute involving the Catholic Bishop of Nnewi Diocese, Most Rev. Jonas-Benson Okoye, the Holy Ghost Congregation, and the laity of this parish.

While welcoming the guests and parishioners in attendance, the leader of the Parishioners and Concerned Citizens, His Royalty, Crown Prince Orjiewlu Udeorji, said he was overwhelmed by the huge turnout of people despite the prevailing circumstances. He assured them that the faith of the Ihiala people in the Catholic church would never be allowed to die in the great parish.

He said the challenges are enormous; but the Holy Spirit is in control. He expressed the hope that the authorities of the Catholic church will have the wisdom to resolve the present situation.

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The Spokesperson / Secretary, and who doubled as the Chairman, Organizing Committee, Nonye Chukwu, concurred with the Crown Prince. He added that the authorities know the right thing to do in the present circumstance; adding that St Martin’s parish, Ihiala, has a rich history with the Igbo, the Holy Ghost Congregation and Ihiala people.

He added that St Martin’s is the Patrilineal home for the Holy Ghost Congregation in Nigeria.

Others who spoke include Lady Ada Emeka Okolie, CWO President; Mr Linus Nnubia, C M O President; and many others.

Highlights of the celebration include singing competition by various choir groups, march past by all the statutory bodies, cultural dances and displays etc.
Prizes were later given to those who performed excellently.

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Climax of the occasion was conferment of 5 categories of merit awards on 14 eminent individuals, who excelled in various fields of human endeavors, and who have been contributing immensely towards the growth of faith and development of the parish.

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