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Partnership between Brisbane and Nigeria growing in strength

International partnership

International partnership: Bishop Lucius Ugorji of Umuahia, Nigeria, and Archbishop Mark Coleridge signing the new Memorandum of Understanding between Umuahia diocese and the Archdiocese of Brisbane at Wynberg on March 11.

NIGERIAN Bishop Lucius Ugorji made his fifth pastoral visit to the Brisbane archdiocese to meet with his priests working here earlier this month. 

Bishop Ugorji, from the Umuahia diocese in Nigeria, visited Brisbane to renew a commitment to send priests from his region to Australia.

There are now 16 of his priests in Brisbane since signing a partnership commitment in 2007 with Archbishop John Bathersby when he was leading the archdiocese.

A further six priests who came to Australia as seminarians to complete their training at Holy Spirit Seminary are now ordained for Brisbane.

Bishop Ugorji visited Rockhampton Bishop Michael McCarthy, a good friend, for several days during his recent visit. 

Returning to Brisbane, he enjoyed the hospitality of his priests at Aspley, Petrie and Woodford, as well as being hosted at the Archbishop’s residence in Wynberg.

Archbishop Coleridge hosted a dinner in Bishop Lucius’ honour on March 9, attended by all the Umuahia and Brisbane priests originally from Nigeria, vicar general Monsignor Peter Meneely, Clergy Life and Ministry director Fr David O’Connor, Cathedral dean Fr David Pascoe, Holy Spirit Seminary rector Monsignor John Grace and vice-rector Fr Adrian Farrelly, and key archdiocesan staff who support the priests in their parish assignments.

Archbishop Coleridge and Bishop Lucius renewed their commitment to the Umuahia-Brisbane program by signing a new Memorandum of Understanding for the next three years.

“What began as an agreement between Archbishop John Bathersby and the Bishop of Umuahia, Bishop Lucius Ugorji, has matured into something deeper,” Archbishop Coleridge said.

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