Umuhuali Deanery Excels In Her Choir Competition… Winners Selected for the 21st September and 23rd November 2019, for Semi And Grand Finale
By Edeh Nwigwe
The all-important choir competition organized by the Umuhuali Denary in preparation for the semi-finals at Onueke and the grand finale at St. Augustine Seminary Ezamgbo, kicked off in the deanery headquarters Umuhuali on the 31st August 2019.
The competition which was organized by the Umuhuali Deanery Association of Choir among the seven (7) parishes in the deanery through the leadership of their chaplain, Rev. Fr. Peter Ogbonnaya and the chairman of the choir in the same deanery, Bro. Anselm Odo was aimed at preparing the choristers for the Zonal and Diocesan competitions slated for September and November 2019 respectively.
Briefing Citizens’ Advocate reporter at the Corpus Christi Parish Center Umuhuali, the venue of the tournament, the chaplain of the group, Rev. Fr. Peter Ogbonnaya, said the event began with a Holy Mass, officiated by the Dean of the Deanery, the Very Rev. Fr. Cornelius C. Chukwu.
He said that in attendance during the occasion were the chairman and the executive members of the Diocesan Association of Choir (D.A.C), representatives of different Parishes and some priests within the deanery and beyond, including Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Ugwoke, the chaplain of Ngbo Izziah D.A.C, and the parish priest of Our Saviour Catholic Parish, Okwor- Ngbo and Rev. Fr. Elom of St. Joseph Obiagu.
Ogbonnaya appealed to the competitors to adhere strictly to the rules of the game to avoid hitches.
He said that the aim of the choir was to praise God, the Holy Spirit, and humanity, adding that “no choir, no church”.
He further said that to sing is to pray and that singing unites both God and the Holy Ghost.
The chaplain further stated that it enables and enhances the unity of the choristers to adore God, to use instruments to praise God at all times, adding that choir adds color to every Mass and makes such Mass lively, Godly and Holy among other things.
He enjoined all to belong to their various choir groups to praise God and make oneself happy and be in fervent prayers since “one who sings, prays twice”.
Fr. Ogbonnaya thanked the various choir groups and their conductors for their wonderful works in preparation for the competition and thanked their parish priests for their support, hence their perfect exhibitions.
He advised the competing choir groups not to relent but to beef up their practice in preparation for the coming competitions so as to carry the day for Umuhuali Deanery.
The chaplain took time to point out certain lapses which according to him, if not checked and corrected would lead to failure in the subsequent tournaments.
In his interview with the reporter, the Chairman of Choir in Umuhuali Deanery, Bro. Anslem Odo who praised God for making the program a success also thanked the dean of the deanery and the chaplain of the choir in the deanery, Rev. Fr. C.C. Chukwu and Peter Ogbonnaya respectively for their approval and positive directives, encouragement and supports which he said have only made them successful but professional in the field and promised never to deviate from it as they feel happy at all times.
Bro. Odo hinted that song as liturgical worship enhances focus in every Mass and assured that he would throw his weight and those of his executives to ensure the upliftment of choir in the deanery and beyond to sing praises to the Lord.
He stated that the choir across the deanery has no hitches or breach due to the intervention of the various Parish Priests to overcome there would be challenging, both financially and otherwise.
He further said that with such kind gestures the choir would always do them proud and reward them and their parishioners through melodious songs and good etiquette any time anywhere.
The Participated Choirs where: GROUP C.
1.Maria Assumpta Parish, Okpoto
2.Christ the King Parish, Nkalagu
3.St. Patricks Parish Ezillo
4.Corpus Christi Parish, Umuhuali
5.St. Charles Parish, NigerCem.
1.St. Patricks Parish, Ezillo
2.St. Pauls Parish, Ntezi
1.Christ The King Parish, Nkalagu
2.St. Charles Parish, NigerCem
Before the release of the result by the judges, the chaplain and a member of the judges Rev. Fr. Ogbonnaya, said that the result of the marks were based on the observation of the technicalities as noticed and recorded according to each choir exhibition, adding that even the conductors attitude and behavior on the stage were considered and judged.
In the general results, the 1st position in group C. went to Corpus Christi Parish, Umuhuali with 160 points, followed by St. Charles NigerCem 2nd position with 150 points, while 3rd position went to Maria Assumpta, Okpoto with 134 points.
In group B. the 1st position went to St. Patricks Ezillo with 155 points, and St. Pauls Ntezi bagged 2nd position with 145 points.
Also in group A. Christ the King Choir, Nkalagu got the 1st position with 197 points while St. Charles NigerCem bagged 2nd position with 187 points.
There were ovations and overwhelming joy on the faces of the winners, they described the resulting descent.