A Christian clergy at the St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Aggrey Road in Port Harcourt, Very Rev. Fr. Leuismary Okeyia has opened up about his unwavering joy and fulfillment in his vocation, stating, “I am happy to be a priest.”
The Catholic Priest who is known for his compassion and dedication to his parishioners, shared his profound journey of faith and how it led him to embrace the calling of priesthood.
Speaking at the anniversary of his 56th birthday celebration as well as 23rd Priestly Ordination at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Aggrey Road, Port Harcourt on Sunday, Fr. Okeyi expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve the community and spread the message of love, hope, and forgiveness.
“Becoming a priest allowed me to dedicate my life to something greater than myself, and it has been an incredibly fulfilling experience.”, he said, adding that when he first arrived St. Mary’s Catholic Church couple of months back, he was not as joyful as he is today as he now enjoys the atmosphere and environment with a robust relationship with the faithful.
When asked about the challenges he faced on his arrival at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Fr. Okeyia acknowledged that there were difficulties but emphasized the importance of remaining optimistic and steadfast in his mission.
“Every vocation has its trials,” he said, “but the support and love I receive from the faithful at St. Mary’s Catholic Church and my fellow clergy members are immense sources of encouragement. In fact, I have discovered in the midst of any environment that there is something good about it. At St. Mary’s, you have given given me a reason not to be sad”, he said.
Beyond his spiritual duties, Father Okeyia has been actively involved in various charitable initiatives and community outreach programs. His dedication to making a positive impact on the lives of others has left a lasting impression on many, both within and beyond the parish walls.
“I want to appreciate all the groups, friends and well wishers and parishioners that are here today. I thank you for coming. I also want to thank members of the Planning Committee for a job well done”, he enthused.
Earlier in his opening remarks, Chairman of the Occasion, Sir Benson Friday Abu said the celebration of the beloved clergy was apt as he has made immense and significant contribution to the church and humanity.
His words, “We the faithful of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Aggrey Road and faithful from sister churches and other faith based organizations are here to celebrate our own for his contribution to the Catholic Church and humanity.
“In fact, we are here today to celebrate a man who has done well in his area of calling after his ordination about three decades ago”.
Others who delivered goodwill messages at the event include Sir Obi Okeke and Lady Tonia Okoduwa who said that fellowship with Fr. Okeyia has continued to inspire and uplift all those who have had the privilege of crossing paths with the remarkable man of God.