Jesus Christ - our sure anchor.

History of the Diocese, Amichi

History of the Diocese, Amichi

The geo-political zone of which is the Diocese of Amichi became conscious of the missionary tread in 1909 with a group of inquisitive and enthusiastic citizens of Amichi on expeditionary venture to C.M.S. Headquarters at St. Mary’s C.M.S. Church Uruagu Nnewi. The ream was led by the earliest convert Okafor Aguzie (Later baptized, Abraham).

These pioneer converts led by Okafor Aguzie their leader who was baptized Abraham, were Okoli Ezike baptized Peter Ezike, Okeke Okonkwo baptized James Okonkwo, Enekebe Onyekonwu baptized Richard Igwebuike and Nwike Onyeorie baptized Joseph Onyeorie. Others who were not yet baptized then were Umeanulude Ezike-Igbokwe, Ajajiofor Nzukwe, Okwumuo Okafor and two women Akuezuonu and Nwayorie.

By 1911 the resident evangelists from St. Mary’s Uruagu had begun to operate in Amichi and the real evangelism had begun throughout Amichi and its environs. From Amichi the gospel spread to Osumenyi, Ezinfite, Akwaihedi, Utuh, Ebenator, Ekwulumili, Unubi and Ogbodi.

All the churches in this geo-political zone remained administered from St. Mary’s C.M.S. Church at Uruagu Nnewi until 1940 when St. Simon church Nnobi became a district and took over the administration from her.

In 1957, St. Andrew’s Church Amichi was made a Parish and other churches in the environ came under the umbrella of the Parish and continued so till the year 1962. When St. Andrew’s Church, Amichi because a district of its own in 1962, it ceased to be under the administration of St. Simon’s Church district Nnobi. While the Churches in the following communities – Osumenyi, Ezinifite, Ebenator, Utuh, Akwaihedi, Ekwulumili, Unubi and Ogbodi remained under St. Andrew’s Church district, St. James Church, Azigbo was still under Nnobi district.

Until now, the Diocese on the Niger continued to be the administrative headquarters of all churches under St. Mary’s Church Uruagu Nnewi. St. Andrew’s Church Amichi, St. Stephen’s Church Osumenyi, St. Simon’s Church Ezinifite, St. Andrew’s Church Ebenator, Holy Trinity Church Utuh, Immanuel Church Ekwulumili, Ebenezer Church Unubi, Immanuel church Akwaihedi St. James Church Azigbo, All Saint’s Ogbodi and many more medium and smaller churches in the present geo-political zone of Nnewi South Local Government Area, Ekwusigo Local Government Area and Nnewi North Local Government Area.

As the Anglican Missions in Nigeria continued to grow and expand, with the Niger Diocese now being too unwieldy to be administered by the Bishop who is the Bishop on the Niger, as well as the Archbishop of the province of the Niger, it became obvious that hitherto Niger Diocese would require more Dioceses. First Enugu Diocese was carved out followed by Awka and then Nnewi Diocese in February 1996. Thus bringing Nnewi, Amichi and Ihiala Archdeaconries under the administration of Nnewi Diocese with its first Bishop as the Rt. Revd Dr G.I.N. Okpala (J.P).

When Amichi District was made Archdeaconry on 14th February 1992 that was before the creation of Nnewi Diocese, the following parishes came under its jurisdiction: St. Andrew’s Parish Amichi, St. Stephen’s Parish Osumenyi, St. Simon’s Parish Ezinifite, St. James Parish Azigbo, Immanuel Church Parish Ekwulumili and Ebenezer Church Parish Unubi.

Soon after the creation of Nnewi Diocese and its inauguration on 14th February 1996, Osumenyi Archdeaconry was carved out of the hitherto Amichi Archdeaconry. At the commencement for the demand of a new Diocese out of the present Nnewi Diocese, only Amichi Archdeaconry (1992) and Osumenyi Archdeaconry (1996) existed and took the initiative for the demand and application for a new Diocese to be called Diocese of Amichi.

In the subsequent Nnewi Diocesan Boards one new Archdeaconry was created, Ezinifite special Archdeaconry inaugurated in May 3, 2008.

With the inauguration of Ezinifite Special Archdeaconry out of the old Osumenyi Archdeaconry, the proposed Diocese comprises of three Archdeaconries, namely Amichi Archdeaconry, Osumenyi Archdeaconry and Ezinifite Special Archdeaconry, comprising fifteen viable parishes which constituted the Diocese of Amichi.

Diocese of Amichi inaugurated on Tuesday 13th January 2009 by the Most Revd Jasper Peter Akinola CON, DD the Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of all Nigeria. It became 144th Diocese of the Church of Nigeria. The pioneer Bishop is the Rt. Revd Ephraim Okechukwu Ikeakor. The motto of the new Diocese is JESUS CHRIST OUR SURE ANCHOR. St Andrew’s Church Amichi is the headquarters and the Cathedral of the Diocese.

In his first Diocesan Board held in the Cathedral on Tuesday 17th February 2009, the Bishop, the Rt. Revd E. O. Ikeakor made the following appointments:-

1. The Chancellor 

Hon Justice Gloria Anulude

2. Deputy Chancellor 

Hon Justice V. N. Umeh

3. Registrar Barr sir. E. Ibeh

4. Synod Secretary 

Rev Canon Sunday Uzoabaka

5. Synod Secretary (Lay) Sir E.M.C Okeke

6. Administrative Secretary 

Ven. Sunday Nnoli

7. Financial Secretary 

Revd Augustine Ojukwu

8. Director of Mission 

Ven. David Nonyelem

9. Chairman Dioc. Bible Study 

Ven. Ephraim Umeh

10. Chaplain EFAC                         

Revd Frankline Chukwudozie

11. Chaplain A. Y. F.                       

Revd Silas Odimegwu

12. Bishop’s Chaplain                     

Revd. Oliver Chigbo

13. Diocesan Music Director         

Revd Canon S. I. Ikeh  

14. Chaplain Council of Knight         

Ven. Ephriam Umeh

In his President address during the first session of the first Synod held at St. Stephen’s Church Osumenyi between Thursday 11th and Sunday 14th June 2009, the Bishop, the Rt. Revd E.O. Ikeakor split the Diocese into the following Archdeaconries:-

1. Cathedral Church Of St. Andrew, Amichi

2. Amichi Archdeaconry with the headquarters at St. Philips Church Eziama-Amichi.

3. Amichi West Archdeaconry with the headquarters at St. Peters Church Amichi.

4. Osumenyi Archdeaconry with the headquarters at St. Stephen’s Church, Osumenyi.

5. Ebenator Archdeaconry with the headquarters at St. Andrew’s Church Ebenator.

6. Ezinifite Archdeaconry with the headquarters at St. Simon’s Church Ezinifite.

7. Ekwulumili Archdeaconry with the headquarters at Immanuel Church, Ekwulunili.

8. Unubi Archdeaconry with the headquarters at Ebenezer Church, Unubi.