Revd George Okikiolu has received a warm welcome from his new congregations in Dromara and Garvaghy. Bishop David instituted George as Rector at a service in St John’s Dromara on 27 June and Canon Norman Jardine gave the address.
George is originally from Nigeria and is married to Funke (Sharon). They have two sons.
George has a degree in Business Administration and Management and a post–graduate diploma in statistics. He worked for a geological company in Nigeria, becoming a project manager, and went on to start his own businesses before leaving the country in 2012 to explore a cross–cultural ministry in St. Jude’s Belfast. It was in Ballynafeigh that he worked under Canon Norman Jardine who was the rector.
“The call of God has been very strong upon my life but as a young and energetic man, I rather preferred a job where I could earn good money and have a career, and these were all I was pursuing until I came to Belfast in 2012 where the call returned powerfully to me and I couldn’t disobey God any more.
“I took up theological education and studies and I was ordained a deacon in 2014 and Priest (Presbyter) in 2015 in the Church of Nigeria, which is part of the Anglican Communion.”
He continued his studies, gaining, among other things, an MA in Theology (University of Cumbria).
Before his appointment to Dromara and Garvaghy, George served as the Outreach Worker/Pastoral Assistant in St. Jude’s Belfast before moving to Donaghcloney Parish as a Pastoral Assistant in 2019.
“My vision as I start this new chapter of my ministry is to see lives transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit through the faithful proclamation and teaching of the Gospel.
“I seek everyone’s prayers as we continue to disciple many servants who will also grow to become servant–leaders in this journey of bringing many to the knowledge of the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
“Christ alone, who is the cornerstone on which we build, will continue to be our vision, shield and buckler as we continue faithfully in this journey.”