Born on January 29, 1967 into the Royal family of His Royal Highness, Igwe Albert U. Ikpenwa and Mrs. Veronica Ikpenwa of Ndeaboh in Enugu State, Nigeria, Rev. Fr. Dr. Albert Okey Ikpenwa began his academic pursuit with his primary education at Central School Ndeabor in 1973. Having obtained his First School Leaving Certificate in 1979, he proceeded to Marist Brothers’ Juniorate, Uturu, Nigeria for his Secondary Education in 1980 where he obtained his West African Secondary School Certificate (WASSCE) in 1985.
After expressing a zealous interest in becoming a Catholic priest, he was posted to the Catholic Secretariat, Enugu for his first long apostolic work from 1986 to 1987. At its completion, he began his Philosophical studies at Seat of Wisdom Seminary, Owerri in 1987 and graduated in 1991 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy (B.Phil).
After his Philosophical studies, he was posted to Mother of Mercy Hospital Ihe for his second apostolic work where he served as an Administrator from 1991 to 1992. Subsequently, he was sent to Bigard Memorial Seminary, Enugu for his theological studies in 1992 where he graduated in 1996 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology (B.D.). In 1993, he also taught at the Institute of Ecumenical Education, Enugu.
Fr. Ikpenwa was ordained a deacon on December 16, 1995 and a priest on August 24, 1996. After his priestly ordination, he served in his Diocese in the following capacities: Assistant Parish Priest, Sacred Heart Parish, Enugu from 1996 to 1997; Financial Administrator, Bigard Memorial Seminary, Enugu and Member, Enugu Diocesan Priests’ Welfare Commission from 1997 to 2001. Thereafter he was sent out to further his studies.
In 2003, he obtained a Licentiate in Moral Theology (STL) from Accademia Alfonsiana Istituto Superiore Di Teologia Morale, Roma, Italia. In 2009, he obtained a Doctorate degree from the same institute. This he combined with a mission apostolate at Pfarrei Sankt Marien Simbach Am Inn (Passau Diözese, Germany) where he served from 2004 to 2012.
After his return from studies, he was posted to Bigard Memorial Seminary in 2012 where he has lectured on Moral Theology in the Theology Department and also served as the Vice Rector II before his appointment as Acting Rector of the Bigard on May 12, 2015. His hobbies include music, reading, basketball, lawn tennis, football and jogging. His Philosophy of life is “Steadfastness in the service of God and humanity“.