Exhumation Mt. St. Bernard.
Eye witness account by Msgr. Emmanuel Nwosu
Fr. Tansi. A girl with advanced stage of cancer is instantly cured.
On September 18, 1986, there was a farewell mass in the monastery church where Fr. Tansi spent 13 years of his monastic life singing and praying the Lords praises with his brother monks. Present at this mass were His Lordship the Abbot of the monastery as the chief celebrant, His Lordship R. McGuniness the bishop of Notthingham,
After the last chapter the time for Fr. Tansi long desire to return to Nigeria had come. He had done everything well, he has fulfilled his monastic vow of stability and owes nothing to anybody, he has to go to his people who has been long waiting for him to return. On the 19 day of September 1986 he left England by the British Airways and arrived Lagos the same day. On arrival, he was received quietly and very discreetly by Fr. D Slattery, the vicar general of the Archdiocese of Lagos and Msgr. Raphael Anasiudu, the Secretary to the Catholic Bishops
9 September 1986: His remains are flown to Nigeria.
17 October1986: After a solemn concelebrated Mass, his remains are reentered at the Priest’ cemetery beside Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity Onitsha. First major miracle obtained through Fr. Tansi. A girl with advanced stage of cancer is instantly cured.
The exhumation and treatment of the Remains took place between 11th and 17th September, 1986. On exhumation, the major bones, a brownish linen covering the skull, the wooden board on which he was buried for 22 years and his shoes were found to be almost intact. When his skull was examined, the brain was amazingly found to be fresh and also intact. This brains after twenty four hours exposure to the elements change color and became crystallized.
While the exhumation was going on the members of the Archdiocesan tribunal were busy taking evidence from the monks who lived with Fr. Tansi. The members of this tribunal included Fr. Celestine Obi, the Bishop’s delegate, Frs. John Anosike and Innocent Umejesi the secretaries and Fr. Hilary Okeke,( later bishop), the promoter of justice.
A representative of Aguleri community Engr. John Manafa arrived on the second day shortly after the remains were pulled out from the grave.
His Grace Stephen Ezeanya, Bishop Albert Obiefuna, Bishop Brian Usanga and over fifty priests from the diocese of Nottingham and Nigeria concelebrating. The Christ faithful at the mass numbered over two hundred mainly Nigerians living in London. The same night there was the last chapter meeting with Father Tansi in the monastery chapter room. During the chapter Fr. Tansi was formally handed over to Archbishop Stephen Ezeanya who received him with gratitude on behalf of the Catholic Bishops, Conference of Nigeria.
3 June 2010: The liturgy of the special Mass to close the year of Priests which was held at the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity Onitsha, the Catholic Bishop Conference of Nigeria declared him the Patron of Nigerian Priests.
18 September 1986: a Requiem Farewell concelebrated Mass by the Community of Mt. St. Bernard abbey
12 September 1986:His Remains exhumed at Mt. St. Bernard Abbey
5 May 1990: Final public session of the Onitsha Archdiocesan Tribunal for the Cause of Fr. Tansi after a concelebrated Mass at the Holy Trinity Field, Onitsha.
21 May 1990: Archbishop Stephen Ezeanya and some members of the Onitsha tribunal handed the documents of the Onitsha tribunal to the Sacred Congregation for the Causes of Saints and at the same time had the opportunity to meet Pope John Paul11 in a private audience. In this audience Archbishop Stephen Ezeanya explained to the Holy Father the work of the Onitsha tribunal, the relevance of the cause to Nigeria and the hope that some day soon the Cause would come to a happy conclusion. He asked the Holy Father to give his blessings to the work of the Postulation, which the Holy Father did in the presence of His Eminence Francis Cardinal Arinze, Msgr. Emmanuel Nwosu, and the representatives of the Onitsha Tribunal.
11 July 1995: In the presence of the Holy Father a decree was issued to recognize his heroic life and virtues. This conferred on him the title VENERABLE SEVANT OF GOD.
25 June 1996: Another decree that recognized the miraculous claim attributed to the intercession of Fr. Tansi. With these two decrees the road to his beatification becomes open and wider than ever.
The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria made a request to the Holy Father to come to Nigeria to beatify
22 March 1998: At the second pastoral visit to Nigeria, the Holy father John Paul 11, beatified Fr. Tansi. In this way the Catholic Church recognized the humble way, he lived out his humble Christian life. Fr. Tansi becomes benefactor.
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