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Here I am, Lord…

Leonard Uzuegbu, Nicholas Okafor, Martin Larsen and Chukwudi Chinaka during the ordination

Men of God: Leonard Uzuegbu, Nicholas Okafor, Martin Larsen and Chukwudi Chinaka during the ordination

By Robin Williams

PRIESTLY vocations are alive and well in Brisbane archdiocese with more young men answering the call the serve Jesus and his Church.

The recent ordination of four deacons brings the total number of 2013 ordinations to 10, a number Holy Spirit Provincial Seminary rector Monsignor Tony Randazzo said had not been seen in 25 years.

Seminarians Chukwudi Chinaka, Martin Larsen, Nicholas Okafor and Leonard Uzuegbu, were ordained to the transitional diaconate by Bishop Brian Finnigan on November 21.

Bishop Finnigan said the ordinations were evidence prayers for young men to answer God’s call had been answered.

“So we give thanks to Chukwudi, Martin, Nicholas and Leonard for their faithfulness, their generosity and their openness to hear the call of the Lord,” he said.

“And no doubt we can join with them in thanking God for the gift of faith, for the gift of their families and all others who have helped them to reach this milestone in their lives.”

Deacon Larsen said the day was about the glory of God.

“It’s also about being able to serve in the Church which I hope to be able to do,” he said.

Deacon Chinaka said his ordination to the diaconate meant the world to him.

“It has been a long journey and it is so great to come to this stage in my life so I am so overwhelmed and overjoyed and I abandon myself to divine providence,” he said.

Deacon Uzuegbu said he thanked God for the grace to answer his call.

“And I ask him for that grace to continue always,” he said.

Deacon Okafor said it was hard to put into words what he was feeling after his ordination but echoed the feelings of his fellow ordinands and said the day was “incredibly wonderful”.

Priests from Queensland and New South Wales joined the candidates, their families, friends and fellow seminarians at Holy Spirit Chapel, Banyo, to celebrate the ordinations.

Men of god: Leonard Uzuegbu, Nicholas Okafor, Martin Larsen and Chukwudi Chinaka with Bishop Brian Finnigan

Men of god: Leonard Uzuegbu, Nicholas Okafor, Martin Larsen and Chukwudi Chinaka with Bishop Brian Finnigan

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