Seminarian’s Last Words on Good Friday Will Live on in Nigeria: Catholic Priest at Burial

Late Ambrose Sule laid to rest 21 April 2022 in Owerri Archdiocese. Credit: Br. Ferdinand Mary Nguaan

Many will remember Ambrose Sule, the Nigerian Seminarian who died on Good Friday, as a dedicated, “silently brilliant” and well-articulated young man. 

For Fr. Jude Ofuani who saw Seminarian Ambrose grow in his formation at the Claretian University of Nigeria (CUN), it is what the Seminarian said before he died that will be engraved in the hearts of those he left behind the most.

Seminarian Ambrose, who until his death was a Philosophy student at CUN, is said to have tripped and fallen while he was playing Peter the Apostle in the recreation of the Passion of Christ Drama on Good Friday, April 15. He was confirmed dead at the Federal Medical Center in Owerri.

In a Monday, April 18 interview with ACI Africa, Ambrose’s colleague, Br. Ferdinand Mary Nguaan, recounted the late Seminarian’s last words as “I will die with you”, a declaration that the Apostle, Simon Peter, makes to Jesus.

Eulogizing the Nigerian Seminarian during his burial on Thursday, April 21, Fr. Ofuani said that the late Seminarian’s last words indicated his deep love for God.


“Ambrose loved God dearly and his last words during The Passion play will be engraved in our hearts and that date and by extension every Good Friday shall be a commemoration not just of our Lord Jesus Christ but of Ambrose Sule,” Fr. Ofuani said.

He added, “May the soul of Ambrose Sule who died in the Lord on Good Friday keep resting in the Lord he professed and wanted to serve in the Priesthood. Amen. Farewell brother! Adieu GI!”

GI is a tag that Ambrose earned for his love for Liturgy classes during his formation, Fr. Ofuani who served the Seminarian as his Postulant Master said.

Fr. Ofuani described Ambrose as very attentive in class and a lover of good Liturgy, saying, “Our classes on the Liturgy were his best, because then we would have opportunity to explore the General Instructions of the Roman Missal, shortened as ‘GI’, which he always quotes and we nicknamed him GI.”

The Nigerian Priest said that he had watched as Ambrose, together with those he embarked on the journey of formation, distinguished himself in his courses.

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“I watched him (Ambrose) and 14 of his classmates distinguish themselves during the interview to join the Claretians, West Nigeria… I watched them walk into the Postulate House and were placed under my care for months of formation,” he said.

The Catholic Priest continued in reference to those who joined the Claretians alongside the late Seminarian, “I watched them grow in all ramifications: intellectually, spiritually, physically and otherwise I watched them excel in their JAMB (Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board) and were approved to begin their philosophy.”

He said he watched the Seminarians advance in their stages of formation, adding, “I had wished to eventually attend their Priestly ordination. I had wished to keep accompanying them in their journey to the Priesthood amidst so much turbulence and storms they might face in the journey.” 

“For Ambrose Sule, he was dedicated, silently brilliant, well-articulated, very attentive in class and a lover of good Liturgy,” Fr. Ofuani said, and added, “In him, you saw a young man who desired to serve God not just because others were doing it, but because he loved God and wanted to do it well.”

He recalled the last message he received from Br. Ambrose in which the late Seminarian expressed his interest in the protection of minors and vulnerable people in society who were prone to abuse.


The message, Fr. Ofuani recalled, read, “Padre, you lectured us during our Postulancy about abuse of minors and vulnerable adults. I don't know if you still have the documents.”

He mourned the late Seminarian who he said was extraordinarily neat and had a good sense of dressing.

“His humor made him loved by all and he always animated the community as the Master of Ceremony during social events,” Fr. Ofuani said of the late Seminarian.

He added in reference to the late Seminarian, “His vast knowledge in the pharmaceutical field distinguished him; a knowledge he applied so very well in helping us.”

“To see you answer the call at your prime is painful and hurts; but it's a call we must all answer one day. You have answered yours,” Fr. Ofuani said during the burial of Seminarian Ambrose April 21.

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Agnes Aineah is a Kenyan journalist with a background in digital and newspaper reporting. She holds a Master of Arts in Digital Journalism from the Aga Khan University, Graduate School of Media and Communications and a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communications from Kenya's Moi University. Agnes currently serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.