Discover the remarkable life and legacy of Archbishop Nicholas Dikeriehi Orogodo Okoh, the former Archbishop of Abuja Province and Primate of the Church of Nigeria in the Anglican Communion. From his humble beginnings in Owa-Alero, Delta State, to his influential role in the Anglican Church, this blog post unveils the inspiring journey of a man devoted to both his faith and service.
Archbishop Okoh Early Life:
Born on November 10, 1952, to poor peasant farmers, Nicholas Okoh’s childhood was shaped by the values of hard work and resilience. Despite facing economic challenges, he pursued education at St. Michael’s (Anglican) School, Owa-Alero, earning his First School Leaving Certificate in 1964. After working in his uncle’s business, Okoh joined the Nigerian Army in 1969, later experiencing a profound conversion after the Nigerian Civil War in 1970.
Ministry and Military Service:
Ordained as a deacon in 1979, Okoh continued his religious studies, eventually becoming a priest and serving in various capacities. Concurrently, he pursued higher education at the University of Ibadan, earning a B.A. in 1982 and an M.A. in 1985. His military career paralleled his religious journey, rising through the ranks to become a lieutenant-colonel.
Consecrated as the second bishop of the Diocese of Asaba in 2001, Okoh’s leadership skills stood out. He later became the Archbishop of the Ecclesiastical Province of Bendel in 2005 and was elected Primate in 2009. Known for his involvement in the Anglican realignment, Okoh led delegations to significant conferences, including GAFCON 2 in Nairobi in 2013.
Controversies and Criticisms:
While celebrated for his contributions, Okoh faced criticism in 2009 for remarks suggesting an Islamic attack on Africa. In 2017, he, along with two other Anglican primates, declined to attend an international meeting due to disagreements over issues like homosexuality and same-sex marriage.
Archbishop Okoh Family and Personal Life:
In 1986, Archbishop Okoh married Nkasiobi Amaechi, and their union has been blessed with five children. Beyond his public role, this insight into his personal life adds a human touch to the narrative.
Awards and Recognition:
Archbishop Okoh’s accomplishments include his promotion to Lieutenant Colonel in the Nigerian Army before his election as the Bishop of Asaba in 2001.
Archbishop Nicholas D. O. Okoh’s story is one of faith, service, and leadership. From his early struggles to his influential roles in the Anglican Church, Okoh’s journey continues to inspire. As he stepped down as Chairman of GAFCON’s Primates Council in 2019, his legacy remains a testament to a life devoted to both God and community.
Q1: What were Archbishop Okoh’s early years like? A: Born into a family of poor peasant farmers in Owa-Alero, Delta State, Nicholas Okoh faced economic challenges but pursued education, eventually joining the Nigerian Army in 1969.
Q2: What significant roles did Archbishop Okoh play in the Anglican Church? A: Archbishop Okoh served as the second bishop of the Diocese of Asaba, the Archbishop of the Ecclesiastical Province of Bendel, and was elected Primate of the Church of Nigeria in 2009.
Q3: Were there controversies surrounding Archbishop Okoh? A: Yes, in 2009, he faced criticism for remarks suggesting an Islamic attack on Africa. In 2017, he, along with two other Anglican primates, declined to attend an international meeting due to disagreements on certain issues.
Q4: Tell us about Archbishop Okoh’s personal life. A: In 1986, Archbishop Okoh married Nkasiobi Amaechi, and they have been blessed with five children, offering a glimpse into his personal and family life.