By Okereke Wilson Ogbonnaya
Members, the Order of the Knight, Abakaliki Sub-Council have commemorated the feast of Patron St. Mathias Mulumba Kalemba on Sunday 9th June 2019 at St. John the Evangelist parish Okpaugwu.
Addressing newsmen during the event, the immediate past Grand Knight (GK) of the religious organization, Sir Cyprain Chijioke Ikwuagwu said that the event was principally for the celebration of their Patron, St Mulumba and six others who were killed at Uganda around 133 years ago under the rule of king Mwanga because of their faith in Christ.
He also disclosed that other essence of the feast was to encourage people towards exhibition of strong faith as demonstrated by their patron and others whom he said refused to renounce Christ even at the point of death.
Sir Ikwuagwu, in his brief history about St. Mulumba told us that after the killing, the patron was beatified in the year 1920 by Pope Benedict XV while Mulumba was eventually made a saint (canonized) by Pope Paul VI in the year 1964.
He therefore disclosed that St. Mulumba and others who were martyred with him displayed undaunted faith before their death and thereby charged all and sundry to be defenders of their faith at all times.
The incumbent Grand Knight, Sir Afamefula Moses Nnamani corroborated the information given by his predecessor and added that the annual event was prompted by the strong faith showed by the patron, a born Muslim who later joined Christianity.
Sir Nnamani said, “Our patron, St. Mulumba was born in the year 1836 in a Muslim home, killed in 1886 and venerated in Roman Catholic. Since then this feast usually organized in his honor has been an annual event.”
GK Nnamani advised that those people who view knighthood as a mere organization or secret cult should change their mindset as its members are saddled with the responsibility of giving support to the church, priest and the society.
The officiating priest Rt. Rev. Fr Monsignor Patrick Mary Anene Mmuo, Vicar General of Abakaliki Diocese and parish priest of St. John the Evangelist church told us that the feast was in honour of the martyrs who chose to die for Christ rather than giving up their faith.
He added that if those persons had denied Christ, they would have been allowed to live but instead they held firmly unto the Lord despite severity of the brutality meted out on them.
The Vicar General in his sermon preached unity among members of the knighthood to enable them achieve their collective goal while encouraging Christians generally to always imbibe the attitude of using their God’s given potentials to the benefit of other persons around them.
Citizens’ Advocate reliably gathered that knighthood election was conducted a day before the feast through which the out gone executive members under the leadership of GK Ikwuagwu handed over to the incumbent heads by GK Nnamani.
Also learnt was the blissful mood which both election and the feast were conducted.Follow us