Closing 2016-2017 Intake of Pre First Phase in Chipata, Zambia


Intake Chipata 2017bBy Rodgers Mwansa: Missionaries of Africa Student.

I was privileged to be part of the ceremony that took place at Lavigerie house in Chipata. Among the clear and worth learning ideas that came from different speakers, I found it valuable to share some sentiments that came from the Bishop of Chipata Diocese, George Zumaile Lungu.

THEY EDUCATED US IN FAITH

(We are the products of the missionaries of Africa)

“We awe sincere gratitude to the Missionaries of Africa for having brought the faith to Chipata. What else should we say than thanking them greatly, pray for them and the fruit of faith they have planted in us” (Bishop)? In the process of uttering the above words, Bishop Gorge Zumaile Lungu was pleased with the presence of the Missionaries of Africa in his diocese.

BEING FORMED IN THE AFRICAN POT

(Missionaries of Africa Brewed in an African clay-pot)

Just from his articulation and facial expression one could easily feel a sense of joy in the heart of Bishop George Zumaile Lungu. The Bishop in his words expressed gladness and appreciation to the Society of the Missionaries of Africa for placing a formation House in his diocese. Again he was pleased to discover that his Christians are proudly involved in the formation of young men in readiness for the mission. In as far as the Missionaries of Africa participated in the education of faith in Chipata diocese, George Zumaile Lungu believes that today, the hands of his Christians are forming Missionaries of Africa. The above was in recognition of the families who, without hesitation, opened their doors to welcome Missionary of Africa students in their families.  The Bishop believes that the period students stay in families is as well an experience of formation and transformation. Again he was proud of some Christians who dedicated their time to go and teach some courses in Lavigerie formation house. For him, all the involvement of his Christian families is being part of the formation team and that is what he calls brewing a Missionary of Africa in an African clay-pot.

ROASTED IN THE HEAT OF OCTOBER AND SOILED IN THE MUD OF DECEMBER

(Quoting one of the missionaries)

“I am the commander in chief of this diocese. As a commander I have to know where big fire is coming from. So I will be careful in the manner in which I locate responsibilities. For you Missionaries of Africa always remember your first charism; primary evangelization”. In saying these words, the bishop encouraged the young men who finished candidate course to take formation more serious because the task ahead is not for frail individuals in as far as Missionary life is concerned. He emphasized that the society they were joining has a charism that has no jokes at all hence, adequate preparation and prayer is a necessary value. 

With the above recognition and recommendations from the Bishop, I consider being reminded of the Missionaries of Africa purpose and keeping the zeal that was born at the beginning of this society.  In respect for time and space, the society is playing significant roles that maybe acknowledged and appreciated in little occasions. In all mission involvements, Glory to God for inspiring Cardinal Charles Lavigerie and the entire Society of the Missionaries of Africa with the continuing concern for salvation and wellbeing of humanity.

AT THE OCCASION OF THE CLOSURE OF CANDIDTE COURSE IN CHIPATA

Our Mission Newsletter Edition No 12 – South Africa


Pontfical So 02-2017 logoDear Friends,

I sincerely hope that you are experiencing the peace and joy of the Risen Christ during this Liturgical Season of Easter.

Jesus’ Resurrection is the event central to our Faith and we need to spend time in reflection and prayer for the extent of its reality to take effect in our daily lives. This season should challenge us to see to what extent the Risen Lord has impacted our lives, are we people of hope, of joy, of peace? The realities of life no matter how burdening and complex should not be what dominates our existence. Jesus’ victory over sin and death should set us free from the “slaveries” that imprison us and stop us from reaching our full potential and true happiness.

Eastertide is a time for rejoicing and celebrating our redemption in Christ Jesus, however it would often appear that we find it easier to live the periods of Lent and Advent than that of Easter and Christmas – do we find reflecting on our sinfulness and need for conversion easier than that of celebrating our new life in Christ?

Xt copieAs we now move to the celebration of the Ascension of our Lord it is important for us to recall the last words of Jesus to his disciples: “go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Mt 28:19) – this so called “Great Commission” must not be overlooked or taken lightly by us, the disciples of Jesus. This is the last wish, the final instruction of the Master to us and this should indicate how important it was for Him and should also be for us. This needs to become our priority focus with regard to our Christian faith. If we are not evangelizing, bringing the Good News and liberation of Christ to others, then we have missed the very reason for our existence as Christians, the very essence of our Faith.

The Resurrection message needs to be made manifest to all people of all times and this is only possible when you and I do our part in living the Gospel values and are witnesses of the living Christ.

The stark reality is that the so many people live without a notion or experience of Jesus Christ in their lives. Many because they have never heard the Good News of Christ proclaimed to them, others because the witness they have received from so-called Christians has not been convincing and others still, due to indifference or hardened hearts. We as Missionary Disciples need to tirelessly proclaim the love and mercy of Jesus Christ to our world of today. We need also to support the universal missionary efforts of the Church by praying for and supporting the Missions and the Missionaries.

May the Holy Spirit whom we await in the celebration of Pentecost awaken in us that same missionary spirit of the early Church that we read about in the Acts of the Apostles.

Gordon Rees

Fr. Gordon Rees mccj, National Director, Missio SACBC / PMS -South Africa, Botswana & Swaziland

Our Mission12

History of the beginning of the Catholic Church in Zambia in Chipata, Eastern Province.


Meeting of all Priests of Chipata Diocese April 2-5, 2017 at the occasion of the 125th anniversary of the Catholic Church in Zambia.

History Catho Church ZambiaBy Fr. Jean-Luc Gouiller, M.Afr 04/04/ 2017

On the page one of the “History of the Catholic Church in Zambia” by Fr. Hugo Hinfelaar, in 2004, we read: “1891 is often considered the year when the Catholic Church was established in our part of Africa now called Zambia when the Missionaries of Africa settled near Mambwe Mwela. But the people of Zambia had been in contact with Catholic Christendom from the beginning of the eighteen century onwards. (…)

The Portuguese-speaking Dominical Missionaries had arrived around 1730 in a market place known as Feira by the Portuguese, situated at the confluence of the Luangwa River and the Zambezi River, near the District Centre of present day Luangwa. (…)

By then, the Chiti mukulu dynasty had been established in Bembaland which had had some contact with Christianity. Their Paramount Chiefs claimed to have come from Kasai in the Congo with some of the sacred relics of Catholic Portuguese origin. (…)

Some Catholic Christians came from India. We know that after Jesus’s departure some of his apostles went to India to bring the Good News of Jesus, the most well-known of them being St Thomas. A place in India became well-known for its Catholics: Goa. This is how, in the 18th century, some Dominican Friars from Goa came to Mozambique as missionaries. Some Catholic priests would come to administer the sacraments and teach catechism. (…)

In 1754, still from India, some resident parish priests came to Mozambique to be in charge of the station of Zumbo. A certain Fr. Pedro, from Goa, became very well known. People would say of him that he had planted the tree of the Holy Gospel. All this very near what is now Zambia, and certainly at times in Zambia. One day, Fr Pedro even met somebody in authority called Mazombwe, whom he wanted to stay with. Fr Pedro was also a medicine man. He died in 1751. His funeral attracted many people, apparently thousands of Cewa, Nsenga, Bisa, and Kunda people. (…)

When the well-known Protestant missionary explorer Livingstone passed where Fr. Pedro had been he still found the remnants of his church and a broken bell. (…)

At the beginning of the 1880s, the Jesuit missionaries opened a small mission among the valley Tonga at Mwembe and visited the Litunga, Lewanika, King of the Lozi at Lealui. However, because of a lot of setbacks, sicknesses and deaths, they abandoned their project a few years after. (…)

Another example around 1798: On the “Danger Hill” road, north of Mpika, a monument has been erected in remembrance of the journey of the Portuguese explorer Jose Maria Delacerda el Almaida. On a board we read this: Was Dr in mathematics, some time he was the royal astronomer in Lisbon, Portugal, Governor of a region in Mozambique and leader of an expedition to cross Africa. Later he also established a chain of fortified trading posts between Mozambique and Angola. He had set out from Tete with a large party including nine Europeans to reach the town of Chief Kazembe, a very well-known Chief at the south of lake Mweru. But he fell sick and died of exhaustion. His diary gives us the first accurate account of the country and its people of the Eastern part of “Northern Rhodesia in Zambia. The expedition returned to Tete under a Father Pinto. (…)

In the Bangweolo there is the mention of a very gentle person, Luchere Nganga, from Brazil, who went to many places helping people to forget about their differences and jalousies. One day he disappeared after having said, it seems, that another one, apparently a missionary (or several of them) would come in the future dressed in white.”

Cardinal_LavigerieNow let us see the position of Cardinal Lavigerie, Bishop of Algiers and founder of the Missionaries of Africa in 1868, and of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Africa in 1869, first called “The Agricultural and Hospital Sisters”. Little by little, Lavigerie was getting ready to send his Missionaries in Central Africa.

In 1878, a group of three set out for Central Africa by a long way which they thought safe, accompanied by guides apparently very cooperative. But, in a desert, they killed the three Missionaries. Three more Missionaries followed another new way and were also killed. It was clear that another way to go to Central Africa would need to be found. This is what was planned for 1889.

Cardinal Lavigerie sent four Missionaries to the South of Malawi. These were: Fr. Adolphe Lechaptois, Fr. Valentin Heutebize, a Brother builder Antoine Verkuelen and Fr. Joseph Mercui. They were sent to a place where they could probably meet some Portuguese Christians. They arrived at Mponda on 28th December 1889, but at a time when they were some troubles between two groups of colonisers: the English and the Portuguese. The area had just been declared a “British Protectorate”. The newly arrived Missionaries were in a dilemma.

Great Britain’s plan (ambition) was to be “at home” from Cape Town in the South to Kairo in the North. Hence the name of “Cairo Road” given to a street of Lusaka town in present Zambia. The Portuguese had another ambition: they had been in that part of Africa since the 16th century. They too felt at home over there. They wanted to link together for themselves the East of Central Africa, Mozambique, with the West: Congo and especially Angola.

However, in the meantime, the four Missionaries had started some activities, especially caring for the sick and organising a school for young people, which they very much enjoined. But on the other hand the Missionaries were not at ease with the local Chief “Mponda” and some of his people.

A decision had to be taken: to go elsewhere. Lavigerie himself, from afar, had realised that the members of another denomination had been campaigning against the Catholic Missionaries, and Chief Mponda was disappointed because he had not received guns or whatever else from the Missionaries of Africa.

ob_8b5b72_siege-de-la-african-lakes-companyThe new plan of Lavigerie was to ask the four Missionaries to go to Karema in Tanganyika (now Tanzania). So the four Missionaries left Mponda in June 1891 by boat towards Karonga on the shore of Lake Malawi. Then they were to travel by following the “Stevenson” Road up to Lake Tanganyika. With the help of an Englishman agent of the African Lakes Company, they gathered a large group of men to protect them and help them carry their luggage. On their journey, men, women and children whose villages had been destroyed by the slave traders, joined them.

They were well received when passing through the village of Chief Mambwe. However, by then, the young Fr. Heurtebise had contacted a bad malaria. He was very sick and his companions were afraid that he would not survive. Providentially, they found a place called in Chimambwe “mwela”, meaning “wind”, because it is in a high place and with a cold weather. They settled in a shed built but then abandoned by the African Lake Company. In July 1891, because of the sickness of Fr. Heurtebise, they began to organise a place as if it was to become a Mission Post. Brother Anton began to build a house for the Missionaries and started a garden while Fr. Heurtebise, feeling better, started to instruct a number of people using the little they knew of Kiswahili, Chichewa and Chimambwe. That was a beginning of evangelisation in Zambia.

cropped-mambwe-mwila-06-08-2016-18-jpeg.jpgMambwe-Mwela becomes a Mission.

 During that time Fr. Lechaptois managed to travel as far as Karema (in Tanganyika) to inform the other missionaries of their intention of establishing a permanent Mission post at Mambwe-Mwela. He dedicated the new Mission to Mary, Our Lady of the Angels. Fr. Heurtebise, sick with malaria, was persuaded to go back home in France. Fr. Lechaptois was appointed Superior of the Missions in Tanganyika, where he would become a Bishop later. He was replaced in Mambwe- Mwela by Fr. Depaillat.

At the end of the rainy season, in May 1892, their new house was hit by lightning. The grass roof burned down. However, more and more visitors (traders, hunters, explorers) were coming to see them seeking accommodation for a night or two. Unfortunately, problems were developing in the area around Mambwe-Mwela, as the Mission was squeezed between the territory controlled by the British South Africa Company and the Tanganyika Territory.

During that period, a new Father, Achille van Oost, arrived and saw the difficult situation of this new Mission Post. He then began to look further South, in the Bemba country, for a new foundation. In January 1894 he succeeded in establishing a first contact, and then a second, with Chief Makasa, explaining to him that he was a God’s messenger. It impressed the Chief, who, in March 1895 offered him to settle to Kayambi. Unhappily, Fr. Achille van Host died on 20th April 1895. His grave is at Mambwe- Mwela. But the idea of building a Mission in Kayambi remained in spite of a fear that Chief Chiti Mukulu would not approve it. He accepted it.

In May 1895, Fr. Lechaptois, Bishop in Tanganyika, came to bring a successor to Fr. Van Host: Fr. Joseph Dupont who would be nicknamed “Motomoto”. Together they visited Chief Makasa. Fr. Dupont immediately took up the challenge of setting up the new foundation of Kayambi. But it was not a simple project, they would have to move with more than two hundred people (some of them orphans of parents killed in war) who lived with them at Mambwe- Mwela. Some others were young men and women who had been prisoners of war and were bought as slaves from various chiefs by the Arab slave traders, but who had been redeemed by the missionaries.

Two months later, in July 1895, the Missionaries, together with their people, started on their journey to Chief Makasa village first. The Chief was not very happy with so many people but Fr. Dupont showed his bravery and strength of character until Chief Makasa allowed them all to move to Kayambi. So, July 1895 became the date of birth of the first permanent Mission post of the Diocese of Chipata and even Zambia as a whole.

Development of the Diocese of Chipata.

Bishop Dupont (Motomoto) was ever ready to advance the development where he was at ease, mostly at first in the Bemba area, just as the Abemba were also very at ease with Motomoto. In 1895 he was sent to Nyasa. (Nyasa was the name given by the Yao people to lake Malawi). Motomoto was consecrated Bishop on 15th August 1895 in Kayambi.

Regularly, at first, new Missionaries would arrive in the country, learn the language spoken where they were posted and get involved in the evangelisation of the people they were sent to, and work in the various activities needed.

In 1899, after some teaching in France, the French Father Mathurin Guilleme was sent first to Zanzibar to take charge of the ‘procure’ and receive the newcomers or those going on leave. There, with his own eyes, Fr. Guilleme saw the horrors of the slave trade. He used some funds of the Holy Childhood and of St Peter Claver to buy back some 1500 boys and girls, including from Congo. In 1899, Fr. Guilleme founded Chilonga. Later he was asked to replace Bishop Dupont who had gone to France for rest. While acting as Bishop, Fr. Guilleme founded Chiwamba, Mua, Kachebere, Nguludi and Kambwiri. These new foundations nicely gave life to the southern part of Nyasa.

On 24th February 1911, Fr. Guilleme was chosen to succeed Bishop Dupont. Something new and very appreciated by all, happened sometime later in January 1913: Bembaland called “Bangweolo” was entrusted to Fr. Étienne Larue, while the Southern part kept the name of “Apostolic Vicariate of Nyasa”, under Mathurin Guilleme. All would be less under pressure. Fr. Guilleme was ordained Bishop in Baudouinville (Congo) on 18th June 1911. Nyasa had had five Mission stations and the new episcopal residence was Bembeke. Bishop Guilleme decided to found a station to the West of Kachebere: Mphangwe. Until that time the “Shire” in what is now Malawi was still served by the Apostolic Vicariate of Nyasa. Little by little it would be only in the hands of the Montfort Fathers, whom Bishop Dupont had called for, without really referring the matter to Rome. But it was finally recognised by Rome.

The First World War diminished the number of Missionaries since some were called as army chaplains. When the war was over, Bishop Guilleme was able to realise one of his dreams: to open a Mission in Sengaland: Minga Mission. He also founded more Missions in Nyasaland.

By the time Bishop Guilleme was 76 years old, he had the consolation of ordaining his successor, Father Oscar Julien. Bishop Guilleme died on 7th April 1942, at 82 years saying; “Into your hands I commend my spirit, ô Lord”.

When Bishop Julien (“Juliere”) started his work, his diocese was a new arrangement of various Vicariates. Bishop Julien had to get used as to which places or peoples of his Vicariate were in; Malawi or Zambia. Moreover, in the North of his Vicariate, the new “Mission sui Juris” of Luangwa was also a little in the same situation; they even had an “Itinerant Catechist school” to make it easier to serve all people. But being given the shape of his Vicariate, as soon as Bishop Julien took charge of it, he transferred his headquarters to Kachebere in order to be within easy reach of all his Missionaries scattered in the various parishes. Between Minga and Naviruli, after having bought a farm he opened Chassa Mission in May 1936. In 1935, he organised and held a synod to discuss Catholic Action, the foundation of a postulate for indigenous Brothers and a common policy to be followed in the different Missions. In fact, they realised that they somehow were in advance concerning Catholic action. Concerning a novitiate for indigenous Brothers, it was thought difficult, at such a point that after some time the effort did not have a happy ending. In 1944 he went home for a long rest. Rome accepted to release him.

On the 1st of July 1937, the Roman Congregation for the Propagation of Faith made a decree, establishing a new ecclesiastical unit made up of Lundazi District which until then had been part of the Luangwa sui juris and the new Apostolic Prefecture of Fort Jameson as well as Petauke District which it received from the Vicariate of Nyasa. This territory was exactly what the Eastern Province of Zambia would be after independence.

Obviously, the rearrangement done for the new Apostolic Prefecture of Fort Jameson of which Monsignor Martin was made the Prefect in 1937, was a very significant arrangement. It was making it possible to have an easier and better unity between people having the same political boundaries, the same administrations or syllabuses in school, a greater unity between the different parishes. Though reluctant to accept his appointment at first, Monsignor Martin worked hard until 1947 to bring unity in his Prefecture and prepare for the future.

At the arrival of Bishop Firmin Courtemanche and later Bishop Medardo Mazombwe and nowadays Bishop George Lungu, and his Auxiliary Bishop Benjamin Phiri, the Diocese did not need big readjustments. But it was and still is the time for new Congregations or Societies to come and enrich the Diocese with their own charisma, the time also for new parishes, to give the chance to many faithful to gather nearer their homes.

                                                           —————————————–

History of the Catholic Church in Zambia, considering the whole country.

The Jesuits Missionaries

After their first attempt to go as Missionaries especially in the West and South West of Zambia, they let a few years pass and they tried again. Fathers involved:  Frs Prestige, Moreau and Torrend in particular.

The first place they chose to become a Mission was Chikuni, not far from Chisekesi in the north of it.  They found plenty of land around near the Magoye River. The BSA (British South African Company) gave them a freehold contract.

Once the routine of evangelisation had started around Chikuni itself, they took the decision to continue northwards to possibly find another Mission place starting from the Ngwerere River. One day, the unbelievable happened. The team of walking Missionaries had with them a young man called Francis Borja, whom they had saved from raiders. As they walked their way forward on the road, some people walking in the other direction met them. Then they recognised in the first group their own son walking with the Missionaries. It was him indeed, what a joy for the parents (He was lost but now found!). What a surprise for all, a great sign of the Providence.

Then after the joyful encounter, the Missionaries went on walking and walking until they found a site fitting, according to their desires for a second foundation. The people called the place Kasisi. It was about 230 km from Chikuni.

The group started building provisional shelters, preparing a place for a garden and making a small dam. It was Christmas time. Some people living there build a small chapel. Later they would build schools. Some other local people gave the Missionaries a dozen heifers and some oxen to start with. Not far away a certain place called “Rusangu” had already been taken by the 7th Day Adventist Church. The Providence was with them all.

On Kasisi and Chikuni, Frs Moreau and Torrend have always insisted on improving agriculture, especially by using cattle for ploughing. From long ago the Tongas are proud of their cattle, still more then because of the help it can give for development.

Other foundations within Zambia by the Missionaries of Africa in the Luapula: Lubwe: 1895-1905.

Some Missionaries of Africa were appointed to Chilubi Island. People had heard about the good work they had done elsewhere. They were happy to receive them. One well-known Father was Fr. Foulon.

Straight away they started meeting the people around in the small or big islands in Lake Bangweolo. With the Montfort Fathers helping in Nyasa, some Missionaries of Africa had become free for the Bangweolo. So the Luapula Province was going forward. The building of Kapatu and Chibote was done at that time.

During the first decade of the 20th century, the Missionaries of Africa founded no fewer than seven mission stations. The Jesuit Missionaries did the following foundations: Katondwe, Kapoche and Ching’ombe near the Eastern Province. Eight White Sisters arrived in Zambia to start a convent in Kayambi. Other Sisters, of Notre-Dame of Namur, arrived at Chikuni.

But the First World War which started in 1914 made life difficult and some Fathers had to return to France as soldiers in the trenches. Some years after the end of the war, the ideology of the “Indirect Rule” was pushed through.

During the 1930s, a wave of Catholic Missionaries arrived in Northern Rhodesia. It has been an important decade of the history of the Missions: arrival of Franciscan Friars and some missionaries from Poland. Chikuni school became an educational Centre. Still during the 1930s, the Missionaries of Africa established themselves more than before in the North of Zambia, in town. The Conventual Franciscans came to Ndola. Seeing the “Barotseland” in need, the Capuchins arrived. Groups of Brothers and Sisters came for schools and other types of formation helpful for the development of the country.

Then, a bit too fast, came the Second World War which had some serious repercussions for the Missions because it meant cutting off both personnel and money. It was a time of great financial difficulties. However, it must be recognised that the two World wars have made things and people also change for the better. But the Lenshina independent Church was a dramatic experience.

With the coming back of peace, Christian life had started growing in towns. The formation of the local clergy, Priests and Sisters, was getting organised, putting into practice what Pope Pius XI had asked for in the past, the “plantare Ecclesia”. Catechists and laity joined in, and the local hierarchy was taking its place. Little by little a Catholic Secretariat was being organised to guide both the clergy and the lay people.  The coming of Independence, 1950-1964 and after, was a challenge to all. The growing Church could not let that time pass without getting involved in the development happening in the country and in planning for the future. The national Office of Social Education, started by Fr. Calmettes, helped people to understand the numerous declarations.

Indeed, like the country as a whole, the Church also was “coming of age”.  Many were the topics which had to be talked about, one of them being for instance the “Philosophy of Humanism” launched by President Kenneth Kaunda or the “Scientific Communism”.

Hugo HinfelaarLittle by little, up to our modern times, themes for discussion have become “plenty”. But many more also are the people who are able to discuss them, explain them and see what they mean for us in our modern life.  In his book History of the Catholic Church in ZambiaFr Hugo Hinfelaar has recalled and presented many of the topics which make the life of modern Zambia and our Church more understandable and challenging!  If you have the book, let us enjoy it and learn from it!

May God bless Zambia and its people!

History of the beginning of the Catholic Church in Zambia in Chipata, Eastern Province.

Prayer sold to the highest bidder.


Zambia Daily Mail LogoMay 21, 2017

TORN APART with BOYD PHIRI

IT seems nowadays if you want to attract a large following to make bucks you add ‘prophet’ to your name.

Forget about prophet Bushili, this is why someone would prefer to call himself prophet Mavuto, even if his traditional name means problems.

Someone would want to call himself prophet Malilo even if his traditional name means funeral, yet someone would want to call himself prophet Masauso even if the traditional name means suffering.

Yes, to some people who bask in the title of men of God, being a prophet means everything, including putting their hands in their congregants’ pockets.

By the time they start distributing fliers headlined “STOP SUFFERING”, they would have made sure that they have stopped suffering themselves using your hard-earned money.

Perhaps this is the reason why you don’t see them distributing fliers headlined “STOP STEALING”.
Not that it is bad to stop suffering, but one thing is sure, some clergymen are obsessed with being in control over people and giving them orders to bring their valuable items, including underwear for anointing.

This is why most people flock to wherever they hear there is a prophet, leaving their own pastors in the hood wondering whether they should abandon preaching and start farming, although it is better for them to sow a seed than force congregants to plant in their pockets every time.

It would not be surprising to hear that most of our local pastors have become fishermen instead of fishers of men after losing their flock to foreign prophets. Of course, a prophet is never welcomed in his own town, not even in his own hood.

Maybe this is why nowadays school classroom churches in the hood are not attracting many people as most of them stay home waiting for a foreign prophet to come to town.

If they want marriage, they call upon the name of a prophet instead of the name of God; if they want their husbands to stop drinking beer, they call upon the name of a prophet instead of God; if they want their underwears to be as white as snow, they call upon a prophet to bring anointed underwear.

Needless to say, it is not right to drag the name of God into problems involving one’s underwear, even if one needs a new one.

In other words, for some people, prophets have become substitutes to witchdoctors who also profess to have solutions to every problem, including bringing back one’s lost lover.

Some people call upon the name of a prophet to heal them instead of the name of God, others call upon the name of a prophet when they need babies instead of the name of God.

This is why some prophets have been demanding a lot of money from some desperate women in the hood, even duping them into having sex with them under the pretext of anointing them with fertility.

Some women are duped into paying huge sums of money to some prophets under the pretext that their marital problems would be solved by prayer.

bushiri_profitThis brings me to the prophet Shepherd Bushiri saga. He has been accused by some of his followers in South Africa of ripping them off.

According to a report by ANN7, a woman who attended his session accused prophet Bushiri of making her pay 5,000 rand after she wrote to him to help her pray for her marriage.
The woman says nothing has changed in her marriage after paying the money to him.
Shepherd Bushiri has been in the news in recent weeks, of course, for wrong reasons.

In Zambia, he has become at odds with Government and some local clergymen whom he has accused of frustrating his trip to the country to conduct healing sessions.

Even if he had insisted that he would travel to Zambia in spite of his travel ban as a foreign prophet, the government says he is not welcome.

Of course, it would be naïve for him to insist on coming to the hood when he has thrown the name of Minister of Religious Affairs Godfridah Sumaili into the mad.

I support Government’s position to ensure that controversial prophets like Bushiri do not make people in the hood start adding ‘prophet’ to their names and sell prayers to the highest bidder to buy planes.

Of course, not all prophets are bad, but it is some clergymen like Bushiri who have distorted people’s view about prophets.

bjboydphiri@yahoo.com

Mafrwestafrica lettre du 16 mai 2017


Mafrwestafrica logoAujourd’hui, les Missionnaires d’Afrique de l’Ouest vous proposent de visiter de nouvelles pages sur leur site http://www.mafrwestafrica.net.

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 « Déclaration conjointe de Rabat » sur le site de l’ARCRE ces informations sur la rencontre entre l’Académie du Royaume du Maroc et le Conseil pontifical pour le dialogue interreligieux (lire la suite)

« Noé » deux articles assez récents parus sur le site du Groupe de Recherches Islamo Chrétien de Tunis, sur le thème de Noé (lire la suite)

« Le Pape à Al-Azhar, espoir pour le Moyen Orient » cette visite du 28 avril 2017, constitue un événement fondamental en cette période si troublée (lire la suite)

« Amitié islamo chrétienne à Taizé » la communauté de Taizé, sur l’appel d’amis musulmans et avec eux  a organisé, du 5 au 8 mai, une rencontre sous le signe du « Goût de Dieu » (lire la suite)

 Justice et Paix

 « Comment étudier si on n’a pas d’argent ? » la question se pose et trois cas sont choisis pour inciter à la réflexion : deux en Côte d’Ivoire et un au Burkina (lire la suite)

« Pêche illégale en Afrique de l’Ouest » Greenpeace mène une opération de repérage de pêche illégale dans les eaux des pays d’Afrique de l’Ouest. Les chinois sont bien présents (lire la suite)

« Lutter contre l’apatridie » en Afrique de l’Ouest. Être apatride, soit sans nationalité, a beaucoup de répercussions sur la stabilité des pays et la vie quotidienne des personnes concernées (lire la suite)

 Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

 « 82 jeunes nigérianes libérées par Boko Haram » Ces jeunes filles ont été rendues à la liberté, mais cela fait trois ans qu’elles avaient été enlevées. Retour difficile à une vie normale (lire la suite)

« Mauritanie et CEDEAO » La Mauritanie, qui a quitté la Cédéao en 2000, semble s’en rapprocher de nouveau même s’il n’est pas question de réintégrer l’organisation régionale pour le moment (lire la suite)
« Lutter contre le terrorisme en Afrique de l’Ouest » tout particulièrement au Mali, au Tchad et au Niger (lire la suite)

« Comment va le Burkina ? » des informations très détaillées et plutôt optimistes prises sur le site de Jeune Afrique (lire la suite)

Miracle money, talk-time, touch: My foot!


Mirical MoneyGENDER FOCUS with EMELDA MWITWA

Zambia Daily Mail Limited May 4, 2017

A PASTOR was arrested in Chisamba district recently for defiling five girls, two of them his own flesh and blood. The 49-year-old repeatedly had carnal knowledge of the girls aged between 10 and 14. Call him a masquerader who has been disowned by his church, but my concern is on ‘unsuspecting’ women and girls falling in the sexual trap of dishonest clerics. This is just one of the many cases where some of our clerics have made news for the wrong reasons. Women have been the worst victims, but now, we have seen girls also falling prey to dishonest ministers of the gospel.

What makes women and girl children easily fooled than their male counterparts is that the former are normally driven by desperation to do things that are unbiblical at the command of the preacher. As far as some women are concerned, anyone who comes in the name of God is infallible. If he is able to quote a few scriptures and claim to be operating under prophetic power, they will do anything he asks them.

And the men and women who are cheating people in the name of God have seen how people nowadays hunger not for righteousness or service for God, but the gifts and blessings.

People want quick money, miracle talk-time, miracle jobs, supernatural promotions and anything that comes miraculously, regardless of the fashion in which it comes.

In an ideal world, the Church should teach their members to work hard to earn money, but now, the prophets are encouraging laziness among their followers because their miracles allegedly come instantly.

Young girls and boys should be encouraged to study and have future ambitious of what they want to do when they complete school.

Children should know that education presents a myriad of opportunities for them to have a better future and also contribute to socio-economic development.

 And of course, with the Lord helping them, they will pass examinations if they study and will be able to achieve whatever they want in life.

The Bible does not say Christians should get things on a silver platter; they too need to earn their bread by hard work. According to the Bible in Proverbs 10:4 ‘A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich,”, whereas 2 Thesalonnians 3:10 says ‘The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.’

These are among, the many scriptures that teach us to work hard, so where this spirit of people flocking to church to with folded hands to get miracles is coming from, no one knows. Even Jesus Christ the son of God was a carpenter before he went into full- time ministry. To me, this teaches us to work hard for what we desire, and then we can pray to God to bless the work of our hands, according to Deuteronomy 15:10.

So adults should model hard work to the children so that they are not cheated, and eventually sexually molested by people who twist the word of God for personal gain.

Believe you me, women and girls who are being cheated by unscrupulous clerics are not grounded in the word of God.

And because of the unique needs of women for such things as attention from their husbands, the desire to meet Mr Right and the need to conceive, they allow these people to abuse them. Some women allow the so called clerics to touch them inappropriately during ‘prayers’ without raising alarm. Ideally, the Bible should serve as a model of how we ought to pray, how we need to conduct ourselves during fellowship and how we should to relate with the clergy or opposite sex.

But when things get to a point where a woman makes a complaint of sexual assault or rape allegedly occasioned by a pastor, one wonders how the cleric was allowed to stray in that area. Not to say that the cleric can’t drift away, but before anyone who comes in the name of God goes that far, there must have been some danger lights flickering. But most women choose to ignore danger signs and hence finding themselves alone in secluded places with the prophet or at the mountains for deliverance.  Any woman in right frame of mind should raise alarm when the prophet starts making funny suggestions like ‘let’s go to the mountains for prayer’ or ‘I need to sleep with you to exorcise the spirit of bareness.’

Surprisingly, some women make it a habit go to the prophet’s house and entering private rooms for prayers or counselling. And sometimes, this cleric will be alone at home though knowing fully well that he has an appointment with a certain woman or girl.       

And why should the clergy of the opposite sex give you private counsel on ‘sensitive’ matters behind closed doors?

Obviously, some bedroom issues will require the clergy to provide counsel in the presence of his spouse, and if possible, the counselee should also be accompanied by their partner.

Emotional attachments development due to carelessness between the counselee and the counsellor. Our girl children are now falling prey because they see their mothers, sisters and aunties going to all lengths to please the ‘prophets’.

How come, it’s only the girl children who are on record of being abused by clerics of questionable character? I believe they have seen women flocking to these places, probably they have accompanied their mothers before.

Some mothers even put their young daughters on ‘special prayer’ programmes at the prophet’s house.

It’s unbelievable that in this era when girl children are at worst vulnerable to sexual abuse, that a mother should send her daughter unaccompanied for a series of prayers.

If need be, there is nothing wrong with young girls going for ‘special prayers’ but they need to be accompanied by adults to protect them from the ongoing abuse of children.  

Apart from that, mothers and fathers alike need to educate their children about the wolves in sheep skin that are going about cheating people.

Girls should be told that no man should touch them inappropriately even if he claims to be a servant of God. They also need to know that a true servant of God will not take them to a secluded place for prayers. Come on women, let’s guide our girl children properly so that they are not misled and abused.

emeldashonga@yahoo.com/eshonga@daily-mail.co.zm

Mirical Money newspaper form

Miracle money

Mafrwestafrica lettre du 2 mai 2017


Mafrwestafrica logoAujourd’hui, les Missionnaires d’Afrique de l’Ouest vous proposent de visiter de nouvelles pages sur leur site http://www.mafrwestafrica.net.

Actualités

« Pâques 2017 à Kaya » le récit et quelques photos des célébrations, grâce à un message reçu du curé de la paroisse de Kaya (lire la suite).

« La perpétuité pour Hissène Habré », confirmation du jugement porté en 2016 contre l’ancien chef d’état du Tchad (lire la suite).

« Procès Blaise Compaoré » qui a été reculé et doit avoir lieu le 4 mai 2017, après un long temps de tranquillité pour l’ancien chef d’état (lire la suite).

Témoignages 

« Mission à Marseille », un texte du Père Michel Ouedraogo, originaire du Burkina et à Marseille depuis deux années (lire la suite).

« Projet école primaire bilingue » un article paru sur le site abcburkina.net, qui est en même temps un appel à participer à ce projet (lire la suite).

« Récompense Unesco pour le graffiti » une femme et un homme récompensés pour leur engagement qui se traduit visuellement (lire la suite).

Dialogue interreligieux

« Les nouveaux acteurs de l’Islam », la recension d’un livre de Anne-Bénédicte Hoffner,  parue sur le site de l’ARCRE (lire la suite).

« Mai, calendrier interreligieux » lui aussi paru sur le site de l’ARCRE (lire la suite)

Justice et Paix

« 1er mai en Afrique », l’histoire du syndicalisme en Afrique francophone, sur le site de Radio France Internationale (lire la suite).

« Esclavage en Mauritanie » les Harratines réclament la fin des discriminations dont ils s’estiment toujours victimes, car la situation serait encore bien inégalitaire (lire la suite).

« Éducation secondaire gratuite ? ». Ceci est un projet qui va peut-être voir le jour au Ghana et qui changerait la vie de beaucoup de jeunes (lire la suite).

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« 20 terroristes arrêtés au Mali ». L’armée française annonce avoir « neutralisé » samedi 29 avril près d’une vingtaine de « terroristes » au cours d’une opération de la force Barkhane à la frontière entre le Mali et le Burkina Faso (lire la suite).

« Manifestation à Ouagadougou », premier grand rassemblement de l’opposition depuis l’accession au pouvoir de Rock Marc Christian Kabore (lire la suite).

« Nigéria, un émir soupçonné de corruption » mais ses partisans pensent qu’il est visé à cause de ses projets de réformes sociales (lire la suite).

Challenges for rural substance farmers in Zambia.


By Douglas Ogato, M.AfrDouglas-Ogato-2014

While travelling along the Great North Road in Serenje area, I came across a number of women and children by the roadside selling big and cute looking sweet potatoes. For a distance stretching about 15 kilometers, there were about 10 groups of them at different points airing their commodity for sale. One group of sellers after another kept on waving at moving cars begging them to stop. It became blatant to me that those sellers shared the same serious challenge; lack of market.

sweet potatoes copieMy mind and heart got immersed in the daily lives of these people. As I did so, I took a mental flight to the month of October when they were toiling on their farms under the scorching sun to plant sweet potatoes. While working, their hearts must have been full of vigor and hope for the future. They must have hoped for bumper harvest; enough for household use and for fetching some income for the family. At the end of my mental flight, I landed at their present lives. These women and children virtually spend their whole day by the roadside. At the wee hours of dawn, women are already by the roadside hoping to catch up with a generous motorist. And as the day goes by, their children come to join them. This explains why one always sees children accompanying these women selling by roadside. It has become their life; they cook lunch and supper from there. They only go home late at night to lay their heads. During school days, it must be very difficult for schooling children as they won’t have time to do their homework from home, perhaps they do it by the roadside.

As I kept on reflecting on my mental flight and its eventual landing, I made a decision that on my way back to the parish I will stop by one of this “stop and buy roadside markets” not to extend a hand of solidarity. As I parked my car, they all rushed to me with a bucket of sweet potatoes. And no sooner had I came out of the car than they began one by one promoting their commodities. For the few minutes, I realized that, due to lack of market for their produce, they end up disposing them at a throw away price.

As I drove back home, I kept on thinking about these hardworking women of Serenje who tirelessly work hard to break the chains of poverty. May Saint Joseph, the hardworking worker and patron of all workers, intercede for them and all those in similar conundrums!

Statement on the Current Political Situation in Zambia, T-G Mpundu, PRESIDENT – ZAMBIA CONFERENCE OF CATHOLIC BISHOPS (ZCCB)


IF YOU WANT PEACE, WORK FOR JUSTICE (Paul VI)

“Let Justice flow, … down like a river that never dries …” (Amos 5:24)

Statement on the Current Political Situation in Zambia

ZCCB LOGO copieTo all Catholic faithful and all people of good will in Zambia.

This is Easter Tide when we celebrate the great feast of Easter till the feast of Pentecost. My greeting to you is in the words of St. Paul: “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor 1:3; 2 Cor 1:2; Gal 1:2-3; and Ephesians 1:2).

PREAMBLE

  1. As Shepherds of the Church, it is our honour, privilege and duty to teach and guide the faithful through instructing them in matters of faith and morals. It is also our duty to enlighten them concerning the issues confronting them in their daily lives in the light of our faith and the teaching of the Church as the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) so succinctly put and expressed it: The joys and hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the people of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these are the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ.[1]
  2. The Prophet Jeremiah reminds us in Chapter 22 verse 16 that we cannot claim to know God if we fail to respond to and confront the injustices in our society because to know God means to do justiceand to do justice is to know God.” Therefore, knowing God cannot be separated from doing justice and from what we do or omit to do to our neighbour. Consequently, people who inflict pain and suffering to their fellow human beings cannot claim to know God, let alone be “Christian!
  3. The unfortunate incident that happened in Mongu during the Kuomboka ceremony has since been followed by the arrest and detention of Mr. Hakainde Hichilema followed by the slapping of a treason charge on him. We do not in any way condone illegality. We nevertheless deplore the massive, disproportionate and entirely unnecessary force with which the Police acted in apprehending him. Would it not have been much more civilised and professional to deliver a summons to him containing a charge and ordering him to appear before the police to answer charges of alleged law breaking? The brutal way in which the Police acted has only served to heighten the already considerable tension in the nation particularly between supporters of the UPND and PF. The peace that we wish for you and the nation at large in the words of St. Paul is not mere absence of war or strife. Peace means harmony, understanding, respect for and acceptance of others, respect for and even defence of divergence of opinion, wishing others well no matter who they are and what they do for a living. This peace comes from God our Father and from our Lord Jesus Christ. This peace right now is in short supply in our nation. Why?
  4. The continuous tension between the UPND and PF has affected the lives of many other citizens in the country who are living in fear and are not going about their business of life freely. We as Shepherds of the Catholic Church in our country are deeply saddened by the incidents of unprofessional and brutal conduct of the Police Service, the damage to the innocent citizens’ property by suspected cadres, the arbitrary arrests of and horrific torture of suspects as well as the careless, inflammatory and divisive statements of our political leaders. All these are indications that our democratic culture is yet to be firmly planted, nurtured and promoted to enhance the respect for human dignity and rights. Our democratic credentials which have not been much to go by at best of times have all but vanished in this nation that loudly claims to be “God-fearing,” “peace-loving” and “Christian.”
  5. It is our considered view that as a nation, we have lamentably failed to robustly address a number of recurrent snags including those that stem from our previous elections. The current political predicament directly flows from deep-rooted problems we have failed to fix or resolve, notwithstanding four constitutional commissions of inquiry. As we have stated before, “The political environment in Zambia, today, is characterised by manipulation, patronage and intimidation of perceived government opponents. We urge the government to stop using state security institutions to intimidate its own nationals. The police service in particular must be professional and impartial in carrying out their duties of maintaining law and order. Too many of the nation’s resources and time are wasted on politicking at the expense of real development. This culture must change for the better.”[2]
  6. Ideally, the period immediately after such a divisive election as was held in August 2016, our political leaders should have embarked upon a programme of national reconciliation, building and fostering dialogue by keeping old channels in good repair and creating new ones more suited to the new situation. Unfortunately, the Judiciary, the arm of government responsible for adjudicating between individuals and between institutions and delivering justice did not do much, if anything, to engender a mutually acceptable solution.
  7. We are also convinced that the big part of the problem is that politics in Zambia are still reeling in the hangover from the pre-independence political struggle for independence which was reinforced in the One-Party-State. This hangover derives from the wrong perception that political competition is aimed at annihilating or totally silencing political opponents at all costs and by all means available! This is the root cause of intra and interparty intolerance and violence. However, a democratic dispensation that cherishes the parliamentary democracy we would like to build and consolidate demands respect for divergent views and for the rights of individuals and political parties to organise, associate and assemble without any undue restrictions and intimidation. We are again disappointed when we review the events that marked the run up to the August 2016 elections. The democratic principles we have come to know have been violated left, right and centre so that instead of going forward and consolidating our still fragile democracy, we are retrogressing and not so slowly! The political party in power is in the driving seat of the political game on the political field.

We therefore demand from the government of the day to put in place concrete measures to reverse this worrying and dangerous trend.

OUR HOPES AND CONCERNS FOR 2017

Political Situation

  1. We applaud and praise those Zambians on the political playing field who, in spite of all sorts of provocation, are committed to peaceful means of doing politics and refrain from any violence, verbal or physical. These are the people who give us and the nation hope of holding on to a functional democracy in a multiparty scenario where there is more than ample room for citizens’ participation through organised groups although there is tremendous pressure to the contrary. Such people are martyrs of true democracy and must be emulated.
  2. We decry the bad habit which political parties in power assume immediately they make a government of using the Police Service to settle political scores and prevent their political rivals from organising, campaigning and therefore selling their vision of the country and nation to the electorate. It is the same story from one administration to the other and the present government is no exception, if not one of the best examples of the misdeed just mentioned! As a result of brutalising the people through the Police Service, the general public is reduced to fear so that the order of the day is corruption and misuse of public funds. Anyone who criticises the government for wrong doing is sure to have the police unleashed on him or her.
  3. We have always been concerned about the selective application of the Public Order Act by the Police. It is quite disgraceful that a quarter of a century after the return to plural politics and more than half a century of political independence from Great Britain, our governments which we put into power through our votes use the Public Order Act to oppress political opponents and prevent them from organising and assembling together political rallies and to openly express themselves instead of protecting the rights and liberties of the very people who put them into power. Paradoxically, each political party in opposition goes through the biased use of this notorious Act but once in power, they find it so useful that they do nothing to modify or repeal it. Disgraceful indeed! We hope and pray that this law will be revised and if not, then the Police Service must be required to apply it professionally and without targeting opposition political parties only.

The Judiciary

  1. It is an open secret that the Judiciary have let the country down by failing to stand up to political manipulation and corruption. How can one explain the failure of the Constitutional Court to hear and exhaustively conclude a presidential petition? We reiterate what we said before: “For some time now, there has been a persistent discourse on the state of the judiciary in Zambia with respect to its independence and impartiality. This situation has undermined public confidence in this institution. There is need to restore confidence in this important arm of Government. There are also many unresolved questions of public interest that have been left hanging and unanswered by the Executive.”[3] Where is the Judiciary to call the Executive to attention?
  2. We also strongly denounce attacks on the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) and the government’s plans to undermine it. We believe that given optimum conditions, LAZ could play its rightful role as one of the most effective checks and balances in a true democratic dispensation. The plans to kill LAZ are discreditable and we hope and pray they will fail. Together with the Judiciary, LAZ is the last defence of citizens particularly in respect of excesses by the Executive.

A Police Service or Police Force?

  1. What a pity that all the efforts and financial resources our government and the donor community spent to reform the Police from a British South Africa Company and British Colonial Administration Police Force to a modern one of being a Police Service have paid little, if any dividends at all. It is sad to see the police being used and acting like political party cadres. Police officers are supposed to and must be exemplary in following the rule of law since they are in-charge of keeping law and order. We strongly appeal to the Police Service Personnel to be professional in their conduct, impartial and scrupulously fair in the manner that ensures and is seen to ensure that citizens’ rights are respected, protected and not violated. We call upon the government to depoliticise the Police Service forthwith and leave them to do a professional job they have been trained for. Almost immediately after independence, the politicians took over the Police Service as they told them whom to arrest and prosecute and who not to touch!

Culture of Silence

  1. There is fear and trembling among the people shown in the way they are afraid to speak out against injustices. This is due to several actions by government which were meant to instil fear into and intimidate the masses. One does not need to belong to a political party in order for him or her to speak out on the misdeeds happening in the nation. Furthermore, we are witnesses to what transpired during the run-up to the August 2016 general elections when several media houses were harassed and finally closed. The recent happenings were not reported by several media houses because of the heavy presence of the Police. Our country is now all, except in designation, a dictatorship and if it is not yet, then we are not far from it. Our political leaders in the ruling party often issue intimidating statements that frighten people and make us fear for the immediate and future. This must be stopped and reversed henceforth.

Call for Genuine Dialogue and Reconciliation

  1. As hinted earlier on, the process of national healing and reconciliation after last year’s election should have been priority number one for the government as the institution in the driving seat. Unfortunately, the Executive missed this chance. It has been opined that the Church Mother Bodies should have continued their arbitration role as evinced by the Holy Cross Cathedral Meeting before Easter last Year. That initiative was taken on the appeal to ZEC (ZCCB) of the President on 12th March 2016 on the occasion of the ordination of Bishop Justin Mulenga of Mpika Diocese. The Church Mother Bodies did their best but immediately after the meeting, the resolutions which had been taken and agreed to by the participating political party leaders were broken particularly by the ruling party. The Church Mother Bodies were not allowed to succeed! We believe strongly that now that the political party in power because it is now in a strong position and has nothing to fear by way of electoral defeat must be in the driving seat. The Church Mother Bodies, if called upon, are ready to come along.
  2. The politicians especially those in the ruling party must realise that the nation they are governing is deeply divided between those who voted for UPND and those who voted for PF in the last elections. Let the politicians of both parties take it from us since we always have our ears close to the ground that our country now stands on the edge. It is no use playing an ostrich game by burying our heads in the sand thinking that the storm will pass away. It will not, at least not before it has done great harm to this nation. The use of force and intimidation are not the solution whatsoever. Only genuine and sincere dialogue aimed at national reconciliation is the long-term solution. This reconciliation must be firmly rooted in the Christian values of Truth, Forgiveness, Peace, Unity, Social Justice and Freedom. Let us learn to burry our immediate past and rise again to new life.
  3. To the Church and other Religious Leaders, we appeal to them to be instruments of peace, reconciliation and unity. They must urge the entire membership of their flocks to be collectively and individually channels of peace and reconciliation thereby living to our Lord’s call to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Shepherds and the faithful together must be committed to preaching messages of peace, reconciliation and love in word and in deed. Our nation is much larger and transcends our present and future individual or collective political fortunes.

Issued and signed on 23rd April 2017 (Divine Mercy Sunday)

Mpundu signature

 

 

 

T-G Mpundu

Archbishop of Lusaka

PRESIDENT – ZAMBIA CONFERENCE OF CATHOLIC BISHOPS (ZCCB)

[1] Vatican II Documents, Gaudium et Spes – Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, #1.

[2] Cf. Pastoral Statement of the Zambia Episcopal Conference (ZEC), Issued on Thursday, 23rd January 2015, #5.1

[3] Cf. Act Justly and Walk Humbly with your God, A Pastoral Statement of the Zambia Episcopal Conference (ZEC), Issued on 27th January 2013, #8.  

IF YOU WANT PEACE, WORK FOR JUSTICE – pastoral letter Mpundu April 2017

Mafrwestafrica lettre du 19 avril 2017


Mafrwestafrica logoAujourd’hui, les Missionnaires d’Afrique de l’Ouest vous proposent de visiter de nouvelles pages sur leur site http://www.mafrwestafrica.net.

Actualités

« Nouveau provincial d’Europe » en la personne du père Gérard Chabanon, qui a déjà eu de nombreuses responsabilités chez les Pères Blancs (lire la suite).

« Que devient le franc CFA ? » des nouvelles prises sur ‘Jeune Afrique’ et qui remettent les choses à leur place (lire la suite).

« Nouvel évêque de Laghouat-Ghardaia » des nouvelles déjà connues sur ce sujet, mais quelques précisions intéressantes (lire la suite).

Témoignages 

« Une femme se déradicalise » la recension d’un livre écrit par Laura Passioni, où elle raconte son évolution, son parcours en faveur de Daesh, et l’abandon de cet engagement (lire la suite).

« Décès du Père Francisco Hellin », le 14 avril en Espagne, à l’âge de 78 ans dont 50 ans de mission, au Burkina, au Mali et en Espagne (lire la suite).

« 70 ans de serment missionnaire » pour le père Jean Fisset, présentement à Bry sur Marne, et qui a vécu la mission en Algérie (lire la suite).

« Les M.Afr africains bien présents en France » leurs noms sont donnés, ainsi que leurs engagements en communauté ou en paroisse (lire la suite).

Dialogue interreligieux

« Le pape en Égypte » il y a 17 ans que Jean Paul II y était allé, en février 2000. Suite à l’attaque terroriste contre les églises coptes, ce déplacement est d’autant plus significatif (lire la suite)

« Journée mariale islamo-chrétienne » qui se passera à Alger, le 29 avril prochain, sur le thème ‘Écologie et spiritualité’ (lire la suite).

« Dialogue islamo chrétien au Sénégal » où il n’y a que 5% de chrétiens, ce qui n’empêche que la Pâque sera célébrée par tous (lire la suite).

Justice et Paix

« Côte d’Ivoire, procès en cours », suite aux attaques à l’hôtel Novotel d’Abidjan, 5 militaires risquent la prison à vie (lire la suite).

« Jugement à venir pour Blaise Compaoré ». Même si ce dernier est toujours en Côte d’Ivoire, la Haute cour de justice du Burkina a annoncé que l’ancien président et les ministres de son gouvernement seront jugés à partir du 27 avril (lire la suite).

« Dialogue entre l’état et les étudiants au Niger ? » le chef de l’État, le président Issoufou, a rencontré les dirigeants des étudiants mécontents (lire la suite).

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Nouveau gouvernement au Mali » Le nouveau premier ministre Abdoullaye Idrissa Maïga a rendu publique le 11 avril la liste des membres du nouveau gouvernement malien (lire la suite).

« Famine en Afrique » Le nombre de morts provoqués par la famine en Afrique s’accroît de plus en plus. Il faut une aide urgente. La guerre est un facteur déterminant de cette situation (lire la suite)

« Financer les entrepreneurs au Burkina ». L’exécutif burkinabè a décidé de fournir des fonds à ceux qui veulent se lancer. La somme prévue est de deux milliards CFA par an sur 5 ans (lire la suite).

« Fin de grève dans la santé au Mali » Le mot d’ordre de grève est levé, parce que nous avons obtenu satisfaction, a déclaré secrétaire général adjoint du Syndicat national de la Santé (lire la suite).

Monseigneur Étienne-Benoît Larue: The Founder of Child Jesus Sisters.


ChilongaBy Douglas Ogato, M.Afr

Recently, in the wee morning hours, I passed by the convent of the Child Jesus Sisters in Chilonga for a short visit. No sooner had I arrived, the Sisters welcomed me into their house for breakfast. I spotted a portrait of a man hanging on the wall. He was wearing a gandoura and a rosary around his neck. From a distance I could see that he was a White man with a long beard. I saw a name scribbled on the base of the portrait: Monseigneur Etienne Larue. Below were the following words: Our Founder. I asked the sisters: “Who is he?” In unison they responded: “He is our founder.”

Étienne-Benoît LarueAccording to her narration, the seed of the Congregation of Child Jesus Sisters was born when a White Fathers was preaching in Ipusukilo, Kitwe. A girl came to see him after Mass to share her wish to become a priest like him. The story came to the ears of Monseigneur Etienne Larue who heard a similar story from another girl. It became crystal clear to him that the Spirit was at work. God was calling these girls to religious life. So, he saw an urgent need of founding a local religious congregation of Sisters that will be admitting Zambian girls wanting to devote their lives in serving the Lord. This is how the congregation of Child Jesus Sisters came into existence.

Monseigneur Larue requested the White Sisters to help in admitting the first group of girls into the novitiate and to assist in forming and training them. By doing so, Monseigneur Larue applied a similar method to that of Cardinal Lavigerie when he asked the Jesuits to help in forming and training the first group of candidates he had just recruited for his missionary Society he had founded.

As I ardently listened to the Sister narrating their foundation story, my heart throbbed with nods. The Bemba people rightly say: Umwana uushenda atasha nyina ukunaya (a child who does not travel or visit other places praises her mother for her wonderful cooking). Initially, I had thought that the Child Jesus Sisters had been founded by the White Sisters. My stop over at their convent in Chilonga educated me about their foundation. Had I not stopped over, I was going to remain in ignorance about this rich and important moment of evangelisation in Zambia. Indeed, this is some of the history that we need to cherish and celebrate as we are commemorating 125 years of evangelization in Zambia. May the Spirit of Monseigneur Etienne Larue continue engulfing his daughters so that they may continue serving the Lord in truth and charity!

Bishop Étienne-Benoît Larue, M.Afr

Brother Moses Sense Simukonde, M.Afr


The Missionaries of Africa, Sector Zambia, are proud to invite you to participate at the festive celebration in honour of Brother Moses Sense Simukonde, M.Afr, who recently made his Missionary Oath in Nairobi. Let us unite in this event as our family of missionaries is once again increasing. Praise the Lord!

The event will take place in Kasama on Sunday 7, Mai 2017, in the morning, at St. Anne’s parish.

Here is the journey made so far by Brother Simukonde:

 

Justice and Peace Statement on Stay Away (7th April 2017)


Catholic Arch of Johannesburg logoThere seems to be a stigma of challenging and critiquing an elderly person or any hierarchical authority in the African context. This could be due to a cultural background within which the respect of an elderly person or hierarchical authority is instilled in one’s mind at a very young age of one’s upbringing.

The area of concern with such a stigma is, serious erroneous decisions may certainly be made by an elderly person in the society or by any hierarchical authority, should that happens, how could the society convey a message of concern to any hierarchical authority so that any erroneous decision which cripple the society/country could be reconsidered or rather reversed.

In the political arena, mass protest is one of the means which the society uses to express its grievances to the government. The mass protest in itself as a means of the society voicing its concerns to the government with the expectation of being heard is not a bad gesture. Unfortunately, such a gesture often comes with a pack of a double aged disastrous outcome.

On one hand, the disastrous action may come from the protesting group who may end up showing its anger by burning hospitals, schools and university computer labs.  Such a gesture is certainly to be condemned through and through for it brings no human transformation to the society but rather cripples the society from bad to worse. Furthermore, we urge the leaders to refrain from using violent language which insinuate public violence.

On the second hand even if the mass protest is done peacefully, unnecessary shootings which claim the lives of people may follow as the outcome. Such a gesture is also to be equally condemned.

The country is now faced with a very crucial moment whereby Friday the 7th of April South Africa is encouraged to shut down as a means of communicating a serious message to the government. The Catholic Church in Johannesburg (Justice and Peace) urges a peaceful demonstration or stay away whereby people express their concerns to the government without causing any calamitous way which destroys the country’s environment, people’s lives and property.

The Catholic Justice and Peace Department of Johannesburg urges the South African government that it hears the massive cry and concerns of the people; discern these concerns and ultimately come up with decisions which transform the country.

Issued by Episcopal Vicar of Justice and Peace Department of Archdiocese of Johannesburg

Fr. Innocent Mabheka scj

http://www.catholicjhb.org.za/departments/justice-and-peace/

Honorary Doctorate Degree in Culture and Social Anthropology awarded to Father Claude Boucher, M.Afr


Philip MerabaGreat Works Attract Great Admiration and Recognition.

By Philip Meraba, M.Afr.

Our Confrere, Fr. Claude Boucher, founder of the popular Kungoni Centre for Culture and Arts under Mua Mission in Malawi, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Culture and Social Anthropology by the Malawi Campus of the United Kingdom based Share-World University in 2014 during a colourful graduation ceremony.

Mzuzu a dHistory repeated itself this year when on the 24th of March 2017, Fr. Claude Boucher, M.Afr, received his 2nd Honorary Doctorate Degree in the same discipline by the University of Mzuzu at Bingu International Convention Centre in Lilongwe, Malawi. The 18th Congregation (graduation ceremony) of the Mzuzu University that lasted for four hours drew thousands of people from various part of the country. 851 graduated with Diplomas, first Degrees, Masters and P. HD in different fields.

Fr. Claude Boucher was honoured alongside two other hardworking and exemplary Malawians; Mr. Napoleon Dzombe with Doctorate in Entrepreneurship (Honoris Causa) and Mr. Felix Mlusu with Doctorate in Business Leadership (Honoris Causa).

Mzuzu 3b

The enriching heroic profile of our confrere about 40 years of intensive research in the Malawian Culture and languages attracted a lot of applause from the crowds and feeling of amazement and curiosity at the same time as the whole hall stood up to catch the glimpse of this unique cultural Priest not confined   in the sacristy. Mrs. Mercy Kaunda Chinula who read out the biography and presented him afterwards to the Vice-Chancellor of the Mzuzu University, Dr. Robert G. Ridley to confer on our confrere the award stressed that Fr. Claude Boucher well deserved the merit because of his love and respect for Malawi, her citizens, culture and languages, combined with the tireless research on blending culture with religion. This was an encouragement and a challenge to the newly graduates not to excel only in academics but to prove efficient in the field, putting into best the knowledge acquired during long years of intellectual formation and contribute their quota for the growth of the Nation. ‘‘Hard work pays, therefore, graduates of today, work hard and the society shall admire, recognize and honour you like Fr. Dr. Claude Boucher’’, said one of the organizers.

The ceremony was climaxed by interviews on different topics patterning to culture with the new Doctor of Culture and Anthropology. Fr. Claude recurred and narrated to his confrere who represented the White Fathers at the function when many years back he was requested by his Superiors to pursue further a Doctorate Degree in Culture and Social Anthropology after obtaining his M.A. and his reply was, he shall do the Doctorate in the field. This is a dream come true, with two Doctorates in the field. Big congrats Dr. Dr. or Dr² Claude!

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SAP Stagiaires Meeting in Lilongwe, Malawi, Bethany Retreat Centre, Lilongwe, March 20 to 27, 2017.


By Chandan Nayak and Thierry Uyirwoth.

We all traveled safely to Lilongwe, Malawi, for our Southern Africa Provincial Stagiaires meeting: one came from South Africa, four from Mozambique, six from Malawi and eight from Zambia.

We were warmly welcomed by the Provincial Delegate of Malawi, Fr. Michel Sanou, and our two Stagiaires Coordinators Fr. Simon Kalore from Malawi and Fr. Camille Konkobo from Zambia who at the same time helped us to animate the meeting. Fr. Jean de Dieu Bukuru, Stagiaires Coordinator of Mozambique accompanied attended a few sessions.

It was a joyful encounter between brothers after many years of being away from each other. Our opening recollection helped us to surrender ourselves to God and to experience his presence in our meeting. The facilitator, Sister Teresa Mulenga, drew our attention to meditate on Mark 6, 30-31; “Come to a lonely place”. Indeed, we need time reflect on our lives.

We remained faithful to our tight program throughout the week with daily morning and evening prayers with Eucharistic celebrations. Attentive, thoughtful and open-minded, we listened carefully and honestly shared our experiences. We were reminded to be committed, passionate, dedicated, prayerful and always having hope with an appreciative discernment. We looked at our expectations, we heard the experiences of others and to learn from them.

We are happy with this third phase of formation which is helping us to build a foundation for our missionary life by looking into our different apostolates. We have been privileged to learn new languages and experience international community life.

We also visited two M.Afr communities; Chezi and Kanengo on our way to Salima were we enjoyed a picnic on the shore of the Lake.

The last day of our sharing, the Provincial Delegate came for an official visit. He shared with us his experiences and encouraged us. We appreciated very much his presence. We shared supper together with other confreres from Lilongwe.

Truly, we had a fruitful and effective meeting. We are grateful to God and also to those who made it possible for us to experience such a helpful and enriching moment; the Provincial Council, the Provincial Delegates and the Stagiaires Coordinators. Thanks to all who have contributed to this memorable experience.

SAP Stagiaires meeting 2017 bParticipants: Emile Baguma, Congolese, Kasamba, Zambia, Landry Busagara, Congolese, Chezi, Malawi, Patient Cimanuka, Congolese, Lusaka, Zambia, Jean-Marie Vianney, Congolese, Namushakende, Zambia, Olivier Ngizwenimana, Rwandese, Beira, Mozambique, Dimitri Bobloinde Yampa, Burkinabe, Dombe, Chimoio, Mozambique, Thierry Jawiyambe Uyirwoth, Congolese, St. Lawrence, Lusaka, Zambia, Paul Sanogo, Malian, Kanengo, Lilongwe, Malawi, Pascal Sambi, Burkinable, Henley-kwaMphumuza, South Africa, Lazare Ndagijimana, Rwandese, Zolozolo, Mzuzu, Malawi, Chandan Nayak, Indian, Lusaka, Zambia, Valentin Muzi, Congolese, Mzuzu, Malawi, Jean de Dieu Meda, Burkinabe, Chezi, Malawi, Innocent Matata, Congolese, Lumimba, Zambia, Pascal Mare, Burkinabe, Chimoio, Mozambique, Benoit Kouakou, Ivorian, Sussundenga, Mozambique, Emmanuel Kokpe, Togolese, Kasama, Zambia, Augustin Kambale, Congolese, Kanengo, Lilongwe, Malawi, Innocent Manjune, Congolese, Serenje, Zambia, Fr Simeon Kalore, Ethiopian, Parish Priest of Chezi, Malawi, Fr. Camille Konkobo, Burkinbe, Vocation Director of Zambia.

Death of the mother of our confrere Paul Kitha, M.Afr


Mother of Paul Kitha
Maman n’est plus, sans nous dire au revoir! Paix à son âme ! Mama, Teleza Kayuni you don’t even say goodbye. May your soul Rest in Eternal Peace!

The Provincial Delegate of SAP in Malawi sent us a message through WhatsApp announcing the death of the mother or our confrere Paul Kitha who is currently in Burkina Faso as a missionary. Thereza Kayuni passed away yesterday in Mzuzu. She died peacefully as she was having her midday meal. She dropped her plate and felt on the side. The program of her funerals and burial is not yet final. Let us pray for Paul’s mother and also for Paul and the entire family.