Pambula, Eden, Merimbula and jovial Fr George
Held at Merimbula’s St Joseph’s, on the sunniest of wintery days, Fr George Ogah celebrated his 13th year of priesthood with his parish.
It was a mass full of songs and a sermon full of passion and heart. One of the highlights was a stunning arrangement of Secret Garden’s You Raise Me Up, played after the final hymn on the flute by young parishioner Jared Westerlaken with some backing on the organ.
Father George joyously sang the chorus, and, with the St Joseph’s choir harmonies added to the mix, the sound was ethereal; there wasn’t a dry eye in the house!
Members from Lady Star of the Sea in Eden and St Peter’s in Pambula drove to Merimbula for the special event. Everyone joined together after the Mass for a good hot cup of tea and homemade delicacies in the courtyard.
Fr George says that 13 is a special number to him because it marks his 13 wonderful years in the priesthood, but also, he is the 13th child in this family.
“13 is a good number,” he laughs.
During Mass, Fr George thanked and offered prayers for his fellow seminarians, priests and Archbishop Prowse, who ordained him. He thanked his family and parents, who encouraged him in this vocation.
Lumen Christi Catholic College (Pambula) staff who were in attendance remarked on how very popular Father George is with staff and students,
“He is a very good teacher, he repeats the important bits, and joy emanates from him. He reaches all age groups but is particularly loved among the primary students when he conducts a weekly mass in the college chapel.”
Other parishioners love his sermons, saying, “(Fr George’s sermons) are straight from the heart,” and some others remarked on his “perennial smile” and his “contagious love of music and singing”.