The parish priest of Madonna Assumpta Catholic Church Agulu, Rev. Fr. Dr. Joel Okechukwu has been appointed the Awka Catholic Diocesan Chaplain of the Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder, by His Lordship, Most Rev. Dr. Paulinus Ezeokafor, Bishop of Awka Catholic Diocese.

In the appointment letter dated 10/11/20, and made available to the Association, Bishop Ezeokafor expressed the need for spiritual assistance to the association and thanked Fr. Joel for taking up this additional assignment.

While accepting Rev. Fr. Dr. Joel Okechukwu as chaplain of the association, the national coordinator, APLSCD, Mrs Aisha Edward Maduagwu, expressed joy that Fr. Okechukwu, who is notable for his humility and steadfastness in charity, would bring down his wealth of experience and knowledge to bear on the activities of the association. She thanked Bishop Ezeokafor profoundly, while wishing Fr. Okechukwu more graces on his new assignment.

On genotype sensitization, it is expected that Fr. Okechukwu would mobilize his fellow priests in Awka Diocese to ensure that genotype education remains on the front burner of laity activities. As director of the FIDES school of theology Awka, were catechists of the diocese are trained and retrained, it is also expected that a new and pragmatic drive to inculcate genotype knowledge on the catechists would be born. This is imperative considering the important roles they play on marriage counseling in the church. The appointment of Fr. Joel Okechukwu is apt and can best be described as putting a square peg in a square hole.

In a telephone chat with the Director of APLSCD, Rev. Fr. Dr. Cosmas Ebebe to know his reaction; Fr. Ebebe said he was very excited and full of expectations, knowing the capacity of Fr. Okechukwu to deliver on assignments. Fr. Ebebe further described his brother priest as a humble, soft spoken hard working priest who is an accredited peace maker.

Rev. Fr. Dr. Joel Okechukwu holds a doctorate degree in Biblical Theology from the Catholic Institute of West Africa, CIWA Port Harcourt. He is the current Director, FIDES School of Theology Awka, and also a part time lecturer at Tansi Major Seminary Onitsha. He was ordained a priest in 1993. His hobbies includes reading, writing and music.

Edozie Maduagwu
©APLSCD News Bulletin 2020.