OAU Catholic students celebrate cultural essence
THE outing was spectacular and it was pomp galore at the campus of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State, as Catholic students of the institution under the umbrella of the Nigeria Federation of Catholic Students (NFCS) showcased the cultural aesthetics of their varying tribes.
The Catholic students while marking their Cultural Sunday on August 23, 2015, appeared unusually colourful in their different cultural attires.
As they trooped out from their various halls of residence on campus, they were a cynosure of all eyes as other students watched them in admiration.
Even some of the ‘’NFCSers,’’ as they are fondly called on campus, who are resident outside the campus, made it a point of duty to participate in the colourful event without minding the long distance journey.
Another significant event by these culture-conscious students was the cultural thanksgiving held at the Perpetual Light Catholic Chapel, OAU, where they brought virtually all cultural items from the six regions in the country to appreciate God, who according to them, saw them through thick and thin in their academic pursuits.
The thanksgiving mass started around 8:30am as the Chaplain, Rev. Fr. Ayo Abe celebrated the mass in Yoruba language. The priest who normally officiates the mass in English said the change became necessary to key into the mood of the moment.
Some of the students had rendered cultural songs at the mass before the priest gave the homily. In his message entitled, “The Eucharist, a Call to Spiritual Revolution”, Rev. Abe asked Christians to give up their old ways of life and have their minds renewed with spiritual evolution.
The priest read from the book of Ephesians, chapter 4 pointing out that, “the conscious, constant and continuous rejection of the Word of God is the major challenge this revolution is facing in contemporary time. Jesus Christ in the Gospel of John, has commissioned us to celebrate his body and blood in his memory.”
The cleric lauded the students for finding the time to showcase the beauty in their cultural attires urging them to keep it up. He added that the resurrection is for both the good and the bad, but the second death is what will determine whether one would go to heaven or hell.
The church has done its best in obeying the commandment of Christ in respect of taking his body and blood.” Armed with their various items, most of which were edibles, crops and fruits, the students danced joyously to the altar as other members of the congregation followed suit.
Speaking after the thanksgiving ceremony, the president of NFCS, Miss Ogheneuriri Oderhohwo, expressed joy at the turnout of NFCSers to the event saying “ this shows that we (students) are still conscious of our cultural values and norms despite the western lifestyle that most of undertake on campus.”
According to her, the cultural outing shows that their is unity, love, beauty in the nation’s diversity thus urging parents to always get cultural attires for their offspring.
She said: “I believe the bad dressing habits that some students engage in would be drastically curbed should students take to wearing cultural attires.
I seldom wear native dresses but I must tell you, I am so happy wearing it today because it is like a revisit to my root. I, therefore, want to beg our parents to help equip our wardrobes with more native attires.”
Another student, Mr. Timothy Chia expressed happiness at the event saying it has exposed him to the beauty of cultural fashion.