04.04.2005 Regional News

Minister lauds Pope John Paul

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Koforidua, April 4, GNA - The Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Yaw Barimah, had lauded the late Pope John Paul II for rendering dedicated service to mankind by promoting world peace, human dignity and understanding.

He said the late Pontiff used his exalted position and sense of humility to help promote reconciliation and reduction of world tension, adding that he left a worthy legacy of service to mankind which all leaders, especially the clergy and politicians, should emulate. Mr Barimah was speaking during a mass to mark the investiture of newly elevated Monsignor Joseph Afrifa-Agyekum at the St George's Cathedral, Koforidua.

The Regional Minister urged Monsignor Afrifah-Agyekum, who is also the Vicar General of the Koforidua Diocese of the Catholic Church, to use his new office to help advance the socio-economic development of the region.

Monsignor Afrifah-Agyekum, 51, was ordained a priest in 1983 and elevated to the position, "Prelate of Honour", by the late Pope John Paul II in January this year.

The investiture was conducted by the out-going Catholic Bishop of Koforidua and Archbishop-designate for Accra Archdiocese, Rev. Charles Palmer-Buckle.

Rev Palmer-Buckle, who used the occasion to pay tribute to the late Pontiff, noting that despite his failing health in recent months, Pope John Paul continued to discharge his duties faithfully. He was "one who lived and died for Christ," he added.

The Archbishop-designate advised Ghanaians to learn to forgive one another "as Jesus forgave his apostles who betrayed, denied and abandoned him during his passion."

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