On Wednesday, the 13th of July, 2022, priests, religious, lay faithful and the family of Mbogu in Eziagbogu community, from the Catholic Diocese of Ahiara, Mbaise in Imo State, gathered at the Claretian University Chapel in Nekede, Owerri, to bid farewell to late Rev. Fr. Dr. Nicholas Ibeawuchi Mbogu CMF.
The funeral Mass which was presided by the Catholic Bishop of Makurdi Diocese, the Most Rev. Dr. Wilfred Anagbe, CMF attracted numerous sympathizers.
In his homily titled, “the Link Between Living and Time-End,” the Rector of Claretian Institute of Philosophy (CIP) Rev. Fr. Dr. Chrysanthus Ogbozo, reflected on the pain of death especially of a loved one, even though, it leads to something glorious. He further reflected on different kinds of time such as cyclic, linear, seasonal, futuristic, past and finally, an abrupt time.
Abrupt time according to the homilist is a time that actually puzzles every human being because it brings everything about someone to an abrupt end. He then described Fr. Nich’s death as painful due to its abrupt end.
According to him Fr. Nick’s death “is a serious depletion in the package of experienced missionaries amongst the Claretians in Nigeria, East and West. It is a good night to CIP and other institutions like Seat of Wisdom, CIWA and Varitas. It is equally a sorrowful mystery for the many persons who have tested Fr. Nich’s generosity, warm friendship, good counsel assistance of any kind.”
Fr. Chrysantus Ogbozo who is also a senior Lecturer at the University of Nigeria Nsukka recalled that Claretian Missionaries, East Nigeria Province has witnessed such abrupt end of it’s conferes in the recent time, citing examples with the sudden deaths of a first year student of CUN while acting the passion of our Lord on good friday this year, as well as the brutal assassination of Fr. Denis Osuagwu in 2015.
He prayed God to have mercy and deliver the congregation from such abrupt time oddities. The homilist ended with one of the favorite songs of the deseased.
In a funeral oration, the Provincial Secretary, Rev. Fr. Matthew Iwuagwu who was full of emotions, described Fr. Nicholas Mbogu as a true religious who preached Christ and devoted his life to the service of God and humanity both in Education and pastoral ministries.
The newly elected Provincial Superior of Claretian Missionaries East Nigeria Province, Very Rev. Fr. Nathaniel Eke read the condolence message of the Superior General of Claretian Missionaries, Very Rev. Fr. Matthew Wattamattam.
The Provincial Superior then thanked the chief celebrant and the Bishop of Makurdi Diocese, Most Rev. Dr. Wilfred Anagbe, CMF, the representatives of the Archbishop of Owerri Archdiocese, the former Provincial Superiors of Claretian Missionaries, the burial committee led by Rev. Fr. Henry Osuagwu.
He also thanked the Rector of Seat of Wisdom Seminary, Ulakwo, Owerri, Bigard 89 classmates of late Fr. Nicholas Mbogu, his family members, the traditional Ruler of Eziagbogu and the entire Eziagbogu community, the religious, lay faithful, amongst others.
The remains of Fr. Nicholas Mbogu were committed to mother earth shortly after the funeral Mass at the Cemetery of the Claretian Missionaries in Claretian University of Nigeria, Nekede, Owerri, Imo State.
He was born on the 3rd of October 1958, ordained a catholic priest on the 21st of July, 1990. He died on the 22nd of June 2022, at the age of 64.
May his gentle soul rest in perfect peace. Amen.
Public Relations Unit, CUN.