AN ADDRESS AND PRESENTATION OF THE BIGARD BEST BEHAVED SEMINARIANS BY REV. FR. ANTHONY JIDEOFO ATTAH, DEAN OF STUDENTS’ AFFAIRS, ON THE OCCASION OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE 2014/2015 ACADEMIC/FORMATION YEAR, THIS 27TH DAY OF OCTOBER, 2014.
THE INAUGURATING PRELATE MY FATHER BISHOP,
HIS EXCELLENCY MOST REV. GODFREY I. ONAH, OF CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF NSUKKA,
THE RECTOR MAGNIFICUS, VERY REV. FR. UKORO THEOPHILUS IGWE,
THE ESTEEMED MEMBERS OF BIGARD TEAM OF FORMATORS,
GOOD MORNING TO YOU ALL!
Formation of character and cultivation of minds are the two primary ends of formal education. In secular institutions that are not few and far between today, there is an unwelcome severance of moral from education. But true to the mission of the Church as holding light unto fallen humanity, our Seminary has not only flown with the two wings of education and moral, but has also excelled in both as she yearly is blessed with a bumper harvest of her students who ably combine the two aspects of human formation in character and in learning.
Taking into deep consideration that the renewal of the entire Church depends to a large extent on the holistic formation of the candidates to the priesthood, the Vat. II Council Fathers in P.O no.1, solemnly affirmed the critical importance of priestly training. The Seminary, therefore, in her bid to live up to this great expectation of the Mother Church, leaves no stone unturned in her effort to thoroughly instill holistic Human, Spiritual, Intellectual and Pastoral formation in her Seminarians. The accentuation of this unshifting position of the Church is palpable in her insistence on the observance of the Seminary rules and regulations by her Seminarians.
We are here today to, inter-alia, present before us seminarians chosen from among Seminarians because of their marked excellence in character; seminarians from among seminarians who have distinguished themselves in the area of our formation; few among many here who have admirably and integrally excelled in the four-fold areas of formation aforementioned. The character evaluation and assessment leading to the emergence of the cream of persons I shall present to you shortly, we know, is an onerous task since the intention which is a determinant factor of any moral act is inaccessible to any second party. Yet, relying on the best method of assessment available so far, namely, empirical observations, ranging from ones readiness and dispositions to brotherly care, calls to duty whether in the forms of function, labour, or emergencies, attendance to Chapel, general neatness and other areas of human interaction, I stand out here to pronounce that the persons whose names I shall mention hereinafter have been found worthy of the appellation: Bigard Best Behaved Seminarians.
My Father Bishop and all here present, the criteria for the selection of these candidates for this award is rigorous in that all the seminarians, with the exception of the first years who are not allowed to vote or be voted for in the election since they are barely beginning to be known to us and vice versa participated actively in the election. This election which is double pronged was aimed at producing the best behaved seminarian in each class, this involved the class election that nominated the best behaved embers of the respective classes, and the general one intended to produce the overall best behaved seminarian from among the highest in class; theology IV. For the two phases of the election, secret ballot system was used by the students to arrive at the winners.
Having faithfully fulfilled to the letters the requirements for the election of the best behaved seminarian in each class and in Bigard as a family, and having no iota of prejudice nor doubt, My Father Bishop, dear Fr. Rector, the entire staff, and my beloved seminarians, I, therefore , make bold to present to you these well-refined gentlemen from the different classes here in Bigard who henceforth shall have the esteemed honour, provided they do not live otherwise, of being known and addressed as Bigard best behaved seminarians of this hallowed institution.
A. PHILOSOLPHY DEPARTMENT
Philosophy II; IHEDIWE FELIX
Philosophy III; EZENYIMULU CELESTINE
Philosophy IV; EGWU PIUS
Theology II; UGWU JUDE
Theology III; OBU VINCENT
Theology IV; AGBO CHRISTOPHER
C. GENERAL ASSESSMENT
Following the critical, objective and impartial assessment of the entire seminarians, and in line with standing tradition here earlier referred to, I hereby wish to present forth with the overall Bigard Best Behaved (BBB) seminarian of the year in the person of Rev. MR. AGBO CHRISTOPHER.
Conscious of the fact that our assessment is empirical and no more, I encourage you dearest brothers to be more open and docile to the formation you are receiving, seeking the will of God in everything you do as “the Protagonist of your own formation”. While you seek the will of God in your daily struggle, I pray that you may not be weighed down by the rigors that may sometimes, occasioned by the demands of the Seminary rules and regulations, seeing in them a fertile ground to prepare yourselves for the obvious challenges that await you in the exercising of your pastoral and missionary assignment as highlighted by the inaugural Prelate the previous night.
Lastly, Congratulations to the winners even as I thank the general seminarian body for the forthrightness once more evinced in coming up with the winners! God bless you all!
Rev. Fr. Anthony Jideofo Attah,