Ordination is sacramental ceremony in which a man becomes a deacon, priest, or bishop and enabled to minister in Christ’s name and that of the Church. There are three ordinations in the Sacrament of Holy Orders: diaconate; priesthood; and episcopal. The ordination ceremony includes various rituals, rich in meaning and history, e.g., prostration, laying on of hands, anointing of hands, giving of the Gift (chalice and paten) , sign of peace.
The Rite of Priestly Ordination is what “makes” one a priest, having already been a deacon and with the minister of Holy Orders being a validly ordained bishop. The Rite of Ordination occurs within the context of Holy Mass, after being called forward and presented to the assembly, the candidates are interrogated.
It is indeed an honor and a blessing to witness a rich ritualistic ceremony like this as the Bishop ordains the 12 deacons into the ministerial priesthood on Saturday, 14th July, 2018 at the Star of the Sea Cathedral, Takoradi.
The program saw many faithfuls, families & friends, clergy, religious, seminarians, chiefs, statesmen and many other dignities from across the Dioceses as well as the country and even outside Ghana.
The 12 deacons were Rev. John Allu, Rev. Isaac Francis Armoo Jr., Rev. Martin Abu Arthur, Rev. Augustine L. Barno, Rev. Edward Cudjoe, Rev. Benjamin Doughan, Rev. Albin Kissi Ernim, Rev. Marino Kontoh, Rev. Nicholas Nketsia, Rev. Damien William Nketsiah, Rev. Philip Nsobiabah and last but not the least Rev. Nicholas Ukwomah. These young men are referred to by the Bishop the “12 Apostles“.
The Bishop of the Sekondi-Takoradi Catholic Diocese, Most Rev. John Bonaventure Kwofie in his Homily challenged the clergy to discharge their pastoral duties with zeal and faithfulness.
He again bemoaned the issue of amassing wealth creeping into the ministry. He stated that the litany of complaints received at his office are often not about priests not administering the sacraments or not going for benedictions, visiting the sick or preparing homilies but money matters. Money has become a major source of tension in the ministry today, he intimated. “Don’t go looking for money but do your work well and money will look for you” the Bishop retorted.
He further admonished the priests that their responsibility over the household of God is about stewardship, faithfulness, being wise and prudent.
The Mass was presided over by His Lordship, Most Rev. John Bonaventure Kwofie CSSp and concelebrated by 140 priests. Also present were Msgr. Francis Abua-Quansah and Msgr. Simon Asamoah, Vicar Generals for the Sekondi-Takoradi and Wiawso Diocese respectively, Very Rev. Fr. Francis Arthur, Rector of St. Paul’s Catholic Seminary, Sowutoum.
Two of the newly ordained priests had their Senior High School education at St. John’s School and the other ten at St. Mary’s Secondary/Minor Seminary.
Also, among the newly ordained priests were two biological brothers from the same parents, Rev. Father Nicholas Nketsiah and Rev. Father Damien Nketsiah.
Rev. Father Albin Kissi one of the newly ordained gave the vote of thanks on behalf of his colleagues and expressed his gratitude to the Bishop, the priests, the pastoral team, their parents and all Christ’s faithful for their unflinching support throughout their formative period.
The 12 New Priests were appointed and stationed to their various parishes where they will be starting their priesthood journey and discharging their duties as well. Below are their respective places of work;
Rev. Fr. John Allu – Kengen
Rev. Fr. Isaac Francis Armoo – Manso Amenfi
Rev. Fr. Martin Abu Arthur – Shama
Rev. Fr. Augustine L. Barno – Axim
Rev. Fr. Edward Cudjoe – Kwesimintsim
Rev. Fr. Benjamin Doughan – Wassa Akropong
Rev. Fr. Albin Kissi Ernim – Apowa
Rev. Fr. Marino Kontoh – Agona Amenfi
Rev. Fr. Nicholas Nketsia – Tamso
Rev. Fr. Damien William Nketsiah – Kojokrom
Rev. Fr. Philip Nsobiabah – Samreboi
Rev. Fr. Nicholas Ukwomah – Prestea
We wish them all the best of luck in their priesthood vocation and pray for God’s strength and protection on them.