|Archbishop of Abuja|
|Appointed||7 July 1990 (Coadjutor)|
|Installed||28 September 1992|
|Other posts||Cardinal-Priest of San Saturnino|
|Ordination||3 August 1969
by Auguste Delisle CSSp
|Consecration||6 January 1983
by Pope John Paul II
|Created Cardinal||24 November 2012|
|Birth name||John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan|
29 January 1944 |
|Coat of arms|
John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan (born 29 January 1944) is the Roman Catholic Cardinal Archbishop of Abuja. He was previously President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria and Bishop of Ilorin.
Education and teaching career
Onaiyekan was born in the town of Kabba, in what is now Kogi State, to Bartholomew and Joann Onaiyekan. He attended St. Mary's Catholic School in Kabba from 1949 until 1956, Mount St. Michael's Secondary School in Aliade, Benue State from 1957 until 1962, and Ss. Peter & Paul Major Seminary in Bodija, Ibadan from 1963 until 1965. He completed his religious studies in Rome in 1969, and was ordained as a priest on 3 August of that year. Ahmadu Bello, Premier of Nigeria's Northern Region, had offered him a scholarship to study abroad.
Onaiyekan taught at St. Kizito's College, Isanlu in 1969. He became rector of St. Clement Junior Seminary in Lokoja in 1971. He finished his Licentiate of Sacred Scripture in 1973 and earned his doctorate in 1976. He became Vice Rector of Ss. Peter & Paul in 1977.
Catholic Church appointments
In October 1980, Pope John Paul II gave Onaiyekan a five-year appointment to the International Theological Commission. In November, he joined the International Catholic/ Methodist Dialogue Commission.
Onaiyekan was ordained as bishop on 6 January 1983, and became the Bishop of Ilorin, Kwara State. In 1990 he became Coadjutor Bishop of the Diocese of Abuja, and when the diocese became a Metropolitan See in 1994, John Onaiyekan became the Metropolitan of Abuja.
On Tuesday, 18 September 2012, Archbishop Onaiyekan was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to serve as one of the papally-appointed Synod Fathers for the upcoming October 2012 Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization.
On Thursday, 31 January 2013, Pope Benedict XVI appointed Cardinal Onaiyekan to serve as a Member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) and as a Member of the Presidential Committee of the Pontifical Council for the Family. He will hold these memberships until his 80th birthday.
Cardinal Onaiyekan was appointed by Pope Francis as the Apostolic Administrator ad nutum Sanctae Sedis of the diocese of Ahiara in Imo State, eastern Nigeria on Wednesday, 3 July 2013.
He defeated Anglican Primate Peter Akinola for the position of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) President on 19 June 2007 with 72 votes to Akinola's 33. His Vice President was Daniel Okoh, President of the Organisation of African Instituted Churches. However, he was not re-elected in 2010 and replaced by Ayo Oritsejafor
- "The Priesthood in Pre-monarchial Ancient Israel and among the Owe-Yoruba of Kabba: A Comparative Study", unpublished dissertation (1976)
- "The shariah in Nigeria: a Christian view", Bulletin on Islam & Christian-Muslim Relations in Africa (1987)
- "Onaiyekan is new CAN president". CBCN.org (Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria). 19 June 2007. Archived from the original on 20 July 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-16.
- "Archbishop's Page". Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja. Retrieved 2007-11-11.
- Kukah, Matthew Hassan (23 March 2003). "Peace in a Time of War". Thisday online (Leaders & Company). Retrieved 2007-11-11.
- "Annuncio di Concistoro per la Creazione di Sei Nuovi Cardinali" (in Italian). Holy See Press Office. 24 October 2012.
- "Okoh Emerges CAN Vice-President. He was succeeded by Pastor Ayo Orisajfor". Daily Champion (AllAfrica Global Media). 30 July 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-13.
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|Catholic Church titles|
|Bishop of Ilorin
20 October 1984 – 7 July 1990
|Archbishop of Abuja
26 March 1994–present
|President of the Christian Association of Nigeria
19 June 2007 – 5 July 2010