Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu

Photo courtesy of Theodore U. Dickson.

Nwachukwu, Abraham Chukwuemeka (1955–2010)

By Theodore U. Dickson

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Theodore U. Dickson, Ph.D., is a senior lecturer of Old Testament Exegesis & Interpretation, and Family Studies and the head of Department of Religious Studies at Babcock University, Nigeria.

First Published: October 26, 2023

Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu was a strategist layperson, church builder, grassroot mobilizer, and philanthropist from Nigeria.

Early Life, Family, and Education

Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu was born on April 4, 1955, to Mr. and Mrs. Enoch Nwachukwu of Nwachukwu’s family in Umuamara, Agburuike-Isiugwu Village, Obingwa Local Government Area of Abia State, which is located in the eastern region of Nigeria. He was the only surviving son in a family of four children.1 A. C. Nwachukwu, as he was commonly referred to by his contemporaries, had his Primary education at Amano Central School from 1965 to 1971. He attended Eziama High School, Aba, from 1973 to 1977. He later enrolled in the Chartered Institute of Administration (a professional body) and obtained his diploma in Corporate Administration.2

Nwachukwu married Gift Uchechi on June 1, 1986.3 Their union was blessed with four children: Okechukwu Nwachukwu, Chukwuka Nwachukwu, Chinonso Nwachukwu, and Kennedy Chukwudike Nwachukwu.4 Nwachukwu worked as an administrator at Danu Shipping and General Supply Enterprise and then at St. Anthony’s Clinic, both in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, in the South-South region of Nigeria.5 He was renowned for his strategic acumen, forthrightness, outspokenness, impartiality, and honesty.6

Ministry

Nwachukwu was baptized in 1971 and was a pioneer member of the Rainbow Branch of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, which met at the Panalpina World Transport facility in Trans-Amadi, Port Harcourt. In 1984, the company relocated to 38 Nkoro (Nsukka) Street, Mile 1, Diobu, to join the new church worshipping under a canopy and then a batcher structure.7 In 1990, A. C. Nwachukwu was ordained as an elder in the Church. It appears that his ordination uncovered his latent church administration skills.8 In the same year, Nwachukwu and the others erected a concrete structure with the assistance of overseas missionaries Sherman Nagel and Pastor Muller. Although it was intended to be a multi-storey building, the available funds did not allow for the first floor to be finished. As a result, the church chose to roof the lower level without a ceiling, windows, chairs, and fans, among other things. For many years, Nwachukwu spearheaded numerous fund-raising initiatives to ensure the completion of this church structure. He employed various strategies, including musical concerts, to mobilize the church, friends, and well-wishers towards the completion of the building. He captivated the hearts of the members through his influence and determination to ensure that the funds raised were used appropriately.9 From 1993 to 1995, Nwachukwu served as the first elder of the Seventh-day Adventist Church Mile 1, and in 2009, he was re-elected.10

Fame C. Seji and Obimba Nwaokwute, who resided in Azuabie but attended Mile 1 Church, encountered A. C. Nwachukwu on September 22, 1990, so that he could assist them in establishing a branch Sabbath School in Azuabie, one of the unentered areas in the old Rivers Mission. Utilizing his administrative abilities, Nwachukwu led the initiative, and the branch Sabbath School was inaugurated on October 6, 1990, and Nwachukwu delivered the inaugural sermon.11 In 1990, he served as the leader of the church in Azuabie. The Azuabie Church was established on April 30 and May 1, 2004,12 as a result of his dedication as the extension leader (in 2004)13 and the mother church’s ongoing mobilization.14

A. C. Nwachukwu was instrumental in 2005 in the formation of the Port Harcourt Central District from the old Port Harcourt District, due to his dedication to spreading the gospel to unentered regions. He served as the inaugural District Deputy Chairman in 2005 and was re-elected in 2008.15 Nwachukwu mobilized the members to build a befitting parsonage for Mile 1 Church.16 Due to his administrative prowess and negotiating skills, Nwachukwu was involved in the acquisition of land for numerous churches within and outside of his district. His pragmatic style of tranquil, faithful, and people-focused leadership reached its pinnacle during the years he presided over the Mile 1 Church Board. His counsel and many monetary contributions to Mile 1 Church and beyond were greatly appreciated. He also travelled hundreds of kilometers, negotiating marital rites for young men and women in the old Port Harcourt District. He also served as a mediator in cases of family discord and reconciled the conflicting parties.17

The name “A. C. Nwachukwu” became synonymous with the Seventh-day Adventist Church Mile 1 due to his excellent leadership. At age 55, Nwachukwu died at the Seventh-day Adventist Hospital Aba on August 3, 2010, and was buried on September 30, 2010, in his hometown.18

Sources

Funeral program for the burial service of Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu. Retrieved from Mrs. Gift Uchechi Nwachukwu, wife of the deceased. In the author’s private collection.

Iwarri, Otonye, P. “History of Port Harcourt Central District,” 2005. In the author’s private collection.

Macaulay, Levi (ed.). History of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, 38 Nsukka Street, Mile 1, Diobu, Port Harcourt, 2021. Copy of the unpublished manuscript in the author’s collection.

Programme of event for church organization of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Azuabie, Port Harcourt District, April 30, May 1, 2004. In the author’s private collection.

Notes

  1. “Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu,” Funeral Service Brochure, April 4, 2010, 6.

  2. Ibid.

  3. Gift Uchechi Nwachukwu, wife of A. C. Nwachukwu, interview by the author, August 22, 2023.

  4. Ibid.

  5. Ibid.

  6. Personal knowledge of the author, who was Nwachukwu's mentee and worshipped at Seventh-day Adventist Church, Mile 1, Diobu, Port Harcourt, from October 1992 to August 2003.

  7. History of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, 38 Nsukka Street, Mile 1, Diobu, Port Harcourt, edited by Levi Macauley, April 2021, 1.

  8. “Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu,” Funeral service brochure, April 4, 2010, 6.

  9. Personal knowledge of the author.

  10. History of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, 2.

  11. Programme of Event for Church Organization of Seventh-day Adventist Church, Azuabie, Port Harcourt District, April 30, May 1, 2004, 4.

  12. Ibid., cover page.

  13. Ibid., 8.

  14. Ibid.

  15. History of Port Harcourt Central District by Elder Otonye P. Iwarri, Maiden District secretary, 1.

  16. Elder Peter Iroakazi and Rachael Akoma, interview by the author, August 5, 2023, and Elder Godwin A. Ebigo, interview by the author, August 23, 2023.

  17. Personal knowledge and experience of A. C. Nwachukwu by the author.

  18. “Abraham Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu,” funeral service brochure, April 4, 2010, 6.

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Dickson, Theodore U. "Nwachukwu, Abraham Chukwuemeka (1955–2010)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. October 26, 2023. Accessed April 17, 2024. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=1JM8.

Dickson, Theodore U. "Nwachukwu, Abraham Chukwuemeka (1955–2010)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. October 26, 2023. Date of access April 17, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=1JM8.

Dickson, Theodore U. (2023, October 26). Nwachukwu, Abraham Chukwuemeka (1955–2010). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved April 17, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=1JM8.