At Church Service for Wigwes, Osinbajo, Adeboye, Awosika Eulogise Late Banker

Former Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye, and former Chairman of Access Bank, Dere Awosika, in heartfelt eulogies, offered emotional words of comfort and reflections at the combined Service of Songs held yesterday for the late Herbert Wigwe, his wife, Chizoba, and son, Chizi, where they called for reflection of faith, service to God, and mortality.

In his address at the Resurrection Parish, RCCG, Lagos, Osinbajo said no words or actions could alleviate the intensity of the sorrow felt by the Wigwe family.Wigwe died last month in a helicopter crash in the United States, alongside his wife and son, as well as a friend, Abimbola Ogunbanjo.The former vice president emphasised that the shared grief resonated far beyond the national borders, extending across Africa and the world, as many mourned the loss of a genuine friend, a source of hope, and a man whose future appeared ever imminent.He told the grieving members of the deceased family, “I am very mindful that no amount of words or actions can assuage the intensity of your sorrow. Nor can words or actions today heal your wounded hearts. We can only hope that it helps for you to know that you’re not alone in your grief and that this tragedy has broken the hearts of so many.

“I am sure you have seen that this is not just a national tragedy, but across Africa, and many parts of the world. Many are grieving the loss of a true friend, a hope-bringer, and a man for whom the future always seemed so imminent that all across this land and elsewhere, many have been weeping with you.”Osinbajo added, “Herbert is someone, who walked the talk of brotherhood and friendship. It wasn’t just rhetoric. It wasn’t just talk. He was there for his friends; his associates, we have heard how deeply he cared for his family

This event has confronted me and I’m sure many of us with our own mortality or the plans we make and the future that we envisage. Three things that I would like you to know. The first is that as far as God is concerned, the manner of death is not important to God.“John was beheaded, Stephen was stoned to death, Elijah died of an undisclosed illness. What is important to God is the difference between dying and perishing. Everyone will die. Every one of us will die, will confront the Maker

The Word of God says in John 3:16, ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.’ Perishing is dying without Christ and the manner of death does not matter as far as whether we die or perish.“There’s a scripture that came to my mind as I was asked to speak this morning, and that scripture is found in Luke 13. Jesus Christ was hated by people who had heard that a tower collapsed in Siloam and it killed 18 people.

“A tower collapsed, fell on the heads of people and the same people who told him the story also said that just a few days ago, Herod cut some Jews, sliced them into little pieces and mixed their blood with a sacrifice and Jesus expressed his opinion about the matter.“He said all of these people who died, the ones upon whom the tower collapsed, or even the ones who were sliced into pieces and their blood was mixed with the sacrifice, that none of them was worse than any other person or was a worse sinner than any other person.

“He said what was important is that you must repent, that if you don’t repent, you may perish and I pray that all of us who are here, will consider that as far as God is concerned, the moment and time of our death or the manner is entirely up to Him.“What is crucial is our eternal lives.“Finally, the word of God says weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning. I pray for you that this night will be very short and that the joy will come very quickly.”Pastor Enoch Adeboye said the love and memories he shared with Herbert Wigwe would remain in his heart, stressing that his legacy will continue to inspire generations to come

Adeboye, in a condolence message, said the void left by Wigwe would be felt by all who had the privilege of knowing him.The message read, “Herbert’s dedication to philanthropy, nation building, advocacy for children literacy and art made him a remarkable individual. More importantly, his commitment to Christian faith and active involvement in spreading the gospel were exemplary.

“We share in your profound grief during this challenging (time), and offer our sincerest condolences. The void left by Dr. Herbert Wigwe is immense and his absence would be deeply felt by all who had the privilege of knowing him.”

Awosika expressed gratitude for the compassionate, wholesome and complete life Wigwe led.

Highlighting his exemplary demonstration of God’s love and compassion, attributed to his faith in Jesus Christ, she acknowledged their shared faith and the role of Christ, expressing gratitude for the grace of knowing him for over a decade.

Awosika emphasised Wigwe’s fear of God, stating that in times of difficulties, his anchor was the Lord Jesus Christ

She said, “A life of compassion, a wholesome life, a complete life, the life of Dr. Herbert Wigwe.  I thank God for life, his family, his wife, and son. I am thanking God because God says in everything give thanks.

“I am thanking God for him, because he was an example of knowing God, showing the love of God and having compassion. You cannot show the love of God unless you have Christ as your Saviour

“I’m thanking God because I know he gave his life to Jesus. And I’ve had an interaction with Doreen and Doreen believes in no other but Christ.

“I thank God for the very grace of knowing him in just a little over a decade. I found out something about Herbert, he feared God. So in times of difficulties and storms, his anchor was the Lord Jesus Christ.

“We stood holding hands, kneeling down, standing up, walking and praying, that was all that he did. I know that he has triumphed with his wife and son over death. Death, where then is thy sting?

“The love of God in Herbert has been shown through the lives he touched. Let us go and touch other lives that his works may live on. Herbert, Doreen, Chizi live.”

The solemn service of songs brought together a distinguished assembly, including notable personalities, such as Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki and Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede.

Esteemed clergymen, including Pastor Tony Rapu, Pastor Ituah Ighodalo, Paul Adefarasin, and his wife, Ifeanyi Adefarasin, were also present.

The event was presided by the officiating pastor, Peter Amenkhienan, an Assistant General Overseer of RCCG.

Dr. Joyce Wigwe delivered the first reading from 1 Thessalonians 4 vs 13-18, followed by Emeka Wigwe’s second reading from Revelations Chapter 20, verses 11-15. Peggy Wigwe concluded the bible readings with the third from 1 Corinthians 15:50-58.

The funeral programme continues today with a Christian wake-keep at Wigwe University, Isiokpo, Ikwerre Local Government Area, Rivers State. The combined funeral and private internment service are scheduled for March 9.

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