Rev. Fr. Joseph Otoide, former editor of The Catholic Ambassador Magazine died in a hospital in Houston, Texas, USA at 4.00 .p.m. on Tuesday, 19th September, 1995.

The late Fr. Joseph Ehi Otoide was born on 14th February 1960 into the family of Mr. & Mrs. Moses Imhanguezejie Otoide in Ogwa, Ishan, Edo State. He came to Lagos, before he was seven years old. After his secondary education in Commercial Academy, he worked with Guinness Breweries as a typist prior to his entering the National Missionary Seminary of St. Paul, Iperu-Remo, Ogun State in 1979. After his studies in Philosophy and Theology, he was ordained a deacon on January 25, 1987 at the Seminary Chapel, Gwagwalada, Abuja. H e was subsequently ordained a priest on June 20, 1987.

He worked with the seminary formation team (1987-1988) and the promotion department (1988-1989) both in Iperu Remo, Ogun State.

In preparation for a new job as editor of the Ambassador Magazine, he was sent to study Journalism at the Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, (1989-1990). He also did in-service training with two American Catholic Journals, the Marynoll Magazine and the Long Island Catholic Newspaper.

On his return to Nigeria, he took over from Fr. James Sheerin (SPS) as the Editor of the Ambassador Magazine in 1991.

Fr. Joe returned to Marquette Magazine in 1991. He belongs to the International Network of Young Journalists, affiliate of the Catholic Union of the Press (UCIP).

The Late Fr. Joseph lived a life of fruitful service as a missionary priest, in the Missionary Society of St. Paul. He was a member of the Advisory Council of the then Acting Superior General.

As editor, he brought “all the energy of a young and dedicated priest to the job” to quote Fr. Jim Sheerin. He loved to preach the Word of faith, the Gospel of life, with his whole heart and mind, for he knew quite well that those he could not meet from the pulpit could be reached through the printed word.

Fr. Joe’s death marks a significant event in the history of our young Missionary Society. The first member to go before us marked with the sing of faith. His death occurred at a decisive moment: the third week of the one month First General Chapter of the Missionary Society of St. Paul of Nigeria. Most of his brother priests have come from the missions to Gwagwalada, Abuja, to make serious decisions that will affect the lives of unborn generations, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is a time when the MSP priests have gathered to think as a society and as members of the Church; doing what Fr. Joe enjoined his brothers, “to think Society, to think Church” in their commitment to evangelization.

The late Fr. Jose is survived by his parents, brothers, sisters, relatives, friends, and his MSP brothers, and associate members. He will be gratefully missed by all.

May the God of all consolation comfort us in our bereavement.

May his Soul rest in perfect peace. Amen.

(Culled from Programme of a concelebrated thanksgiving High Mass in Honour of Late Rev. Fr. Joseph Ehimanre Otoide (MSP) 1th Feb. 1960-19th Sept. 1995) at St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church, Benin City).