Rev. Francis Alex Okafor died by drowning during a recent send-forth party organised in his honour at the Ibeshe Beach in Oriade Local Council Development Area of Lagos state.
According to an eyewitness account, while Rev. Okafor and some of his guests were swimming, a strong current came and carried him, together with some of the people.
Divers who were immediately mobilised were able to rescue three of them, while Rev Okafor could not be found.
Two days after, his lifeless body of the 30-year-old was found floating at the edge of the sea.
Percy Okuofo, president of Redemption Youth Vocation Ministry (RYVM), the group which organised the send-forth, spoke about the Reverend Father.
He said: “By Catholic rules, before one could become a priest, he must have undergone about nine years of intensive and rigorous training, which also involves an apostolic work in a Catholic church. This would enable him to get acquainted with all it takes to celebrate a mass and acquire more experience in the various aspects of church administration. For the late Rev he has already been ordained a deacon, and waiting to be ordained a priest next year.
“Having completed the six weeks apostolic work at St. Stephen’s Catholic Church Agboju, the late Okafor was full of joy and was warming up to meet his family in Zaria. The Parish Priest Rev. Father Michael Okoh, the parishioners and the members of the church planned a colourful send-forth for him on Sunday, August 16, after which he would leave for further engagements.”
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