Catholic Church to canonize teenager shot dead for resisting rape in Edo

Vivian Uchechi Ogu

14- year- old Vivian Uchechi Ogu: shot dead for resisting rape by armed robbers in Edo to be canonized by Catholic Church

By Jethro Ibileke

The Catholic Church in Benin, Edo State said it has issued the needed edict to enhance the cause for the beatification and canonisation of 14-year-old Vivian Uchechi Ogu, who was shot dead on 15 November, 2009, by armed robbers for resisting attempt to rape her after an attack on her family.

The Archbishop of Benin, Most Rev. Augustin Obiora Akubeze, announced this on Saturday in Benin at a special mass.

He said that the issuance of the edict was to allow petitions for or against her activities while alive that would be further subjected to a tribunal trial before a decision on whether she could become a saint would be decided by the leadership of the Catholic Church.

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Akubeze who disclosed that the Pope included the late Vivian among the 25 people all over the world to begin the process of canonisation, added that the deceased lived an exemplary life and died a heroic death by opting to be killed rather than being sexually defiled.

“Since her reputation for martyrdom and holiness has continued to increase since her death, and after having been formally requested to open the Cause of Beatification and Canonisation of the Servant of God, bringing it to the attention of the ecclesial community, we invite all of the faithful who can give valid testimony to come forth and contact the Archdiocesan Curia at the Chancery, No. 30, Airport Road, Benin City with their information, whether favourable or contrary to the reputation of martyrdom and holiness of the aforementioned Servant of God,” he said.

The Clergy therefore urged members of the public should bring any “manuscripts, diaries, letters and every private writing of the Servant of God. Those who wish to keep the originals may present an authenticated copy.”

Akubeze directed that a copy of the Edict be pasted on the doors of selected catholic churches and other places for two months.

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