Holy Emmanuel Catholic Mission, Umenger
About Holy Emmanuel Catholic Mission, Umenger
Holy Emmanuel Catholic Mission, Umenger started as an outstation of Sacred Heart Parish, Udei. The first mass was celebrated by Rev Fr. Bika Die in 1964 when Most Rev James Hagan (of blessed memory) was then the Bishop of Makurdi Diocese.
In 1965, Rev Fr. Augustine formally inaugurated the church. Another Mass was celebrated in 1967 by Rev Fr. Fenesin and Rev Fr. Macoule celebrated yet another in 1968.
In 1971, Bishop Donald Murray (of blessed memory) visited Umenger church while on pastoral visit to Udei parish. In 1989, Rev Fr. David Aguh the then parish priest of Udei in his desire to expand the parish created three zones in the parish namely: Zone A with the headquarter at Adai, Zone B headquartered at Udei and Zone C comprising Umenger, Uikpiam and Gbajimba areas with their headquarter at Umunger.
Rev. Fr. Jude Jirga also created two additional zones out of Umenger zone namely, Gbajimba and Uikpaim in 1991. Umenger then as the zonal headquarter had all the other zones of Utyondu extraction except Uikpiam namelyTorkula, Antso, Ukaa, Kaseyo, Usenda and Mbabiem respectively.
Thus, Umenger was the potential mission to be created out of Udei parish, but because of the diocesan policy then, that all local government headquarters be made missions, Gbajimba as Guma local government headquarter was made a mission covering the area of zone C of Udei parish of which Umenger was the headquarters then.
This development did not stop there, Rev. Fr. Agberagba Godwin also created additional zones out of Umenger to include Antso and Torkula. In 2006, Rev. Fr. Adolphus Ikuluke took over the mantle of leadership as the priest-in-charge of St. Athanasius Catholic Mission Gbajimba. During the period, he created Kaseyo, Ukaa, and Usenda while Rev. Fr. Samuel Lamen created Mbabiem and Asom zones to facilitate the work of evangelization in the area and the long distances the Catholic faithful had to travel to avail themselves of these sacraments. Rev. Fr. Lamen further created pastoral areas which Umenger is one of the beneficiaries; these areas served as the meeting points of the Christian faithful with the priest in 2013.
The Umenger pastoral area initially comprised of Umenger, Kaseyo and Ukaa zones having 32 churches. But Upon granting mission status to Umenger, Kaseyo and Ukaa zones were carved out to join the proposed Torkula Mission. Umenger now has the following zones, Ununger, Antso, Mbabiem, and Asom totaling 31 churches but zones like Mbabiem, Asom have refused to join the mission claiming that the creation does not favour them due to the distance from the headquarter, leaving only eighteen (18) churches in the mission under the leadership of Rev. Fr. Tyagher Godwin Aondohemba the priest-in-Charge of the Mission.
The parish is at present down due to the Fulani crises with the parishioners staying at the IDP camps at Daudu, Abagena and Gbajimba respectively.