Political Violence in Livingstone parliamentary by-election, Zambia

For immediate release and circulation to the media

Dear all,
In the event of the unfortunate happenings in Livingstone, find here forwarded to you the attached statement. We hope to issue a stronger statement after getting some informed feedback from our staff who are currently on the ground and analysing issues behind the violent incidents which clearly do not auger well for our young and growing democracy.
With many prayers and kind regards in this holy season of Lent. Let us therefore continue to pray for our country. At the same time, let us all unite in praying for the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, who will freely renounce and leave the Petrine Office today for the greater good of the Church he truly loves. How one wishes that the same humility, prudence, wisdom and strength of character could be imbued in our political leaders who are unfortunately thriving on fighting for and trying to keep the instruments of power at the expense of the common good.
Fr. Cleophas Lungu (Secretary General – ZEC)
Political Violence in Livingstone parliamentary by-election, Zambia

PRESS STATEMENT from Three Church Mother Bodies of Zambia

“Happy are the peacemakers: they shall be called children of God” (Mt 5:9)
We, the Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ), the Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ), and the Zambia Episcopal Conference (ZEC), are extremely disturbed and greatly saddened by the violence and loss of precious life in the heat of the recent campaigns for the Livingstone parliamentary by-election. Our hearts and prayers go out to the family of the deceased and all victims of violence. At the same time, we condemn in the strongest terms possible, any form political and electoral violence.
We further wish to appeal for calm and maximum restraint from the various political parties in Livingstone and also from the Zambia Police Service. It is incumbent on all of us not to do or say anything that might worsen an already volatile situation.
This is not the time for finger-pointing. What is needed now is for all stakeholders to do some serious soul-searching: Is this the level our politics has come to? Is this the path we want to pursue in our democratic dispensation?
Let us then commit this great nation to prayer. And may God bless us all!
Issued on 27th February, 2013 in Lusaka by the undersigned;
Rev. Suzanne Matale(General Secretary – CCZ)
Rev. Pukuta N. Mwanza (Executive Director – EFZ)
Fr. Cleophas Lungu (Secretary General – ZEC)

Words of thanks from Jean-Bosco Masaba

Words of thanks from Jean-Bosco Masaba
Dear Serge and all the confreres of Zambia.
Thanks for all what you have done for me, especially for helping me throughout my medical needs.
Thanks to the community of Mwapona Road for your warm welcome. “I was feeling good at home!”
Thanks again to all the confreres and stagiaires of Zambia. I am keeping good memories of all of you.
Thanks to the community of Kabwata, FENZA and Misisi.
Thanks also for my short stay in Kitwe. The confreres are very kind. Thanks for your availability.
Thanks to all of your who have prayed for me and sent messages through the blog and e-mails.
How can I thank you? I say: “Twatotela and twatasha”.
Ps: I came to Lubumbashi without problem. Only that I am feeling pain on my leg. I have stated some treatments. It will be OK!
Thanks Mingi, Jean-Bosco Masaba
Message de Jean-Bosco Masaba
Cher Serge et tous les confrères du secteur de la Zambie.
Merci beaucoup pour ce que vous avez fait pour moi, particulièrement pour les soins médicaux.
Merci à toute la communauté de la rue Mwapoma pour votre sens de l’accueil. “J’étais très très bien chez nous”.
Merci à tous les confrères et stagiaires du secteur Zambie. Je garde un bon souvenir de vous tous.
Merci à la communauté de Kabwata, de FENZA et de Misisi.
Merci encore pour le séjour que nous avons eu à Kitwe chez les confrères. Ils sont bien gentils et merci pour leur disponibilité.
Merci aux confrères qui m’ont  soutenu par leurs prières et messages envoyés sur le blogue et par courriel.
Comment vous dire merci? Je vous dis : “Twatotela et twatasha”.
Ps: Je suis bien arrivé à Lubumbashi: il y a juste la jambe qui continue à me faire mal. J’ai commencé avec la kiné. Ça ira!
Merci Mingi, Jean-Bosco Masaba

MALAWI: Rich 20% of population silent to plight of 80% poor

Lilongwe, Malawi (Agenzia Fides) – The Catholic Bishops of Malawi have expressed gratitude for the solution to a serious two week tug of war between the government and civil servants demanding a 67% pay rise. Protests caused serious social disruption. The authorities have agreed on a 61% per cent increase to the lowest salaries and 5% to the highest ones.
In a statement sent to Fides by the Bishops’ Commission for Justice and Peace, the Catholic Church in Malawi, tracing the roots of the trade union crisis, takes a position regarding the economic crisis which has afflicted the country for some time. The statement says the decision to devaluate Malawi Kwacha and continued floatation and the linkage of the fuel prices to the global market prices leading to automatic fuel price adjustments is worsening the economic situation of the people.
The Commission also criticises certain economic moves of the government such as the decision to privilege some investments over others.
These economic measures, say “Justice and Peace” have created a serious social fracture. “Malawi is seriously entrenching a two-tier society with over 80% of the population struggling to survive and depending on poor, over-stretched and quality-compromised public service delivery; while the 20% are affording privatized education, health and security services.” the statement affirms “This 20% of the population that is able is creating a section of passive and irresponsive citizenry that has become silent to the plight and cries of the majority poor”. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 25/2/2013)

Kitwe Parish, Zambia

Brief History, by Phelim Malumo, M.Afr
In 1993, the Missionaries of Africa with the team of Jean-Marie Beliveau and Maurits De Weerdt took over the two parishes of Kawama and Twatasha which was under the SMA. These Parishes were former outstations of Chimwemwe Parish. The team settled in Kawama, house No. 558. This house is owned by the diocese.
Kitwe is the largest city of the Copperbelt. The confreres are living in Kawama compound in the midst of families originating from all parts of Zambia and some from neighbouring countries (Congo, Tanzania, and Angola, etc). Kawama parish comprises Old Kawama, New Kawama and Kamatipa with a total population of about 40,000 of which 8,000 are Catholics. The White Fathers also serve Twatasha parish which covers Twatasha compound and Race Course with a population of about 25,000 people of which 6,000 are Catholics.
About 5% of the population work for different companies in Kitwe as skilled workers, but a good number are employed as watchmen or security guards and others work as house servants, charcoal burners, at the service of commercial farmers or tiling their own small plots along the Kafue River and Chingola road. However the majority of people struggle for survival in small businesses or trading in a variety of commodities.
 2013 Updates, by Serge St-Arneault, M.Afr
According to Jean-Bosco Masaba, who was on his journey back to Lubumbashi, Kawama means “the solitary man there!” A man was living on his own telling people that the place will be a good one in a near future; “pa kawama”. Also, Twatacha refers to a thankful man happy for the plot he had received; “thank you!”
There are fifteen small Christian communities in Kawama and nine in Twatacha. At the moment, four confreres are members of Kitwe community: Piet van Heijst from Holland, Jacques Bédard from Canada, Felix Kamunenge fom Zambia and Venance Shundu, stagiaire from Tanzania.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

CJTR Lusaka Press Release February 2013

JCTR LusakaJCTR Press Release 22 February 2013

Persistent late delivery of farming inputs harmful to food security, says the JCTR
Timely delivery of farming inputs such as seeds is crucial to ensuring a good harvest. The delivery of adequate and timely inputs by the government is important to many small-scale farmers who continue to heavily rely on the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP). This is why the delivery of farming inputs continues to attract attention from both the government and non-governmental stakeholders. READ MORE


Death of the mother of our candidate Hendricks Chisanga

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I regret to inform you that our candidate Hendricks Chisanga, currently in the novitiate at Samagan, Bobo in Burkina Faso, lost his mother – Ms. Bibian Muchinshi. She was sick for some time and passed on in Mwewa near Lubwe, Zambia. Sadly, Hendricks also lost a nephew last week.
The two deaths are surely a big blow to Hendricks. He needs our prayers and support in this most difficult time.
Let us join together in praying for Hendricks’ mother, his nephew and Hendricks himself.
May the good Lord guide and inspire us during this Lenten season.
Fr. Christopher Chileshe, M.Afr

Bulletin JIPC-ED No 8 February – March 2013

Bulletin JPIC-ED No 8 February -march 2013

Passion of Christ,
Passion of Victims of Modern-Day Slavery
After his campaign in the different cities and towns of Europe, Cardinal Lavigerie went back home to Algiers. The campaign was not finished. He immediately seized on the celebrations of Good Friday (19th April 1889) to invite the Christians to see, in the sufferings of the slaves, the continuity of the passion and cross of Christ. For him, Christian compassion with the suffering Christ should necessarily lead to com-passion with the victims of slavery. Elsewhere in his campaign, he used the text of the Last Judgment of Mathew 25: 31ff, to come to the same conclusion.  (…)          By Richard Nnyombi, M.Afr    READ MORE

Death of Pierre Kuppens, brother of our confrere Jos Kuppens

Dear All,
This morning we received the sad news that Pierre Kuppens, Jos’ elder brother, has died.  He suffered a brain haemorrhage on Wednesday and passed away at about 9 o’clock.  Pierre leaves a wife and three grown children.  May his soul rest in peace.
Let us keep Jos Kuppens and his family in our prayers at this sad time.
William Turnbull
Sector Superior-Malawi
Message sent on the 22nd February 2013

Good news about Jean-Bosco Masaba

Good news! Jean-Bosco Masaba is going back home tomorrow to Lubumbashi, DRCongo. The doctor was very pleased about the results. Everything went well. Jean-Bosco will need another medical exam next year to prevent the polyps to grow, often associated to cancer. Thanks so much for your messages and prayers.

Bonne nouvelle! Jean-Bosco Masaba retourne demain chez lui à Lubumbashi, RDCongo. Le médecin était très content des résultats. Tout s’est donc bien passé. Jean-Bosco devra tout de même avoir de nouveaux examens l’année prochaine pour prévenir la croissance de polypes, cause courante de cancer. Merci pour vos messages et vos prières.

The Southern Africa Province Stagiaires’ meeting – February 2013

Stagiaires 2013 03 - CopieStagiaires who came to their meeting held in Lusaka from the 18th till 23rd February. In brackets: Nationality/Stage.

First row: Jean-Baptiste Todjro (Togolese/Zambia), Emmanuel Lyabonyende Rulinyuma (Congolese/Zambia), Humphrey Andibah Lyubah (Kenyan/Zambia), Fitiwi Abraha Yohannes (Ethiopian/Zambia), Fidèle Mugalihya Macara (Congolese/Zambia)
On top: Jean-Paul Basikaba Evi (Congolese/Zambia), Maurice Aduol Odhiambo (Kenyan/Mozambique), Venance Bharotota Shundu (Tanzanian/Zambia), Raphaël Patrick Sebyera (Congolese/Zambia), Facilitator Paul Namono (Burkinabe/Malawi), Clayb Caputolan (Filipino/Malawi), Joseph Prabhu (Indian/Zambia), Élie Nyembo Sango (Congolese/Zambia), Serge Kabwakila Kasongo (Congolese/Mozambique), Hervé Tougma (Burkinabe/Malawi), Jonas Michael Mensah (Ghanaian/Zambia), Alfred Nkundimana (Rwandese/South Africa), Facilitator Camille Konkodo, (Burkinabe /Zambia), Erick Balderas Vega (Mexican/Zambia)
The meeting started on Monday 18th February at FENZA. It was facilitated by two Missionaries of Africa priests: Camille Konkobo and Paul Namono. We were 18 (1 SA, 2 Moz, 3 Mlw, 12 Zmb). Fr Christopher Chileshe, the provincial of SAP, gave us the opening speech and welcoming remarks to us all gathered. After adopting the timetable and sharing the responsibilities, we received Fr. Bernard Udelhoven who gave us an input on “the Church and the Culture”. He invited us to listen to the culture and to be open before any judgment.
Our expectations during this meeting were to know each other better, to know the joys, the difficulties and the challenges in community and apostolic life. We also hoped to enrich each other with the experiences and to strengthen our brotherhood. We also expected to have clarity on stagiaires’ dues and duties within the province. We then shared our experiences, focused mainly on our life story, prayer life, language course, community and apostolic life, transport and allowances. Each one was given twenty minutes of sharing after which time was given for questions.
This year 2012-2013, there are eighteen stagiaires from twelve different nationalities. Ten of them are finishing their stage and joining different centers for fourth phase of formation. The others eight are beginning their apostolic experience. All of us were happy to hear that we are coming from Christian families. The experience of the spiritual year has helped us to be aware of the love of God for us, to deepen our faith, and to be taken by Christ’s love through our apostolate. The experience of stage is helpful and quite challenging at the same time. For some of us, the community was prepared in advance, while elsewhere the place was not ready to receive the stagiaire: Just at the arrival, some of the stagiaires entered into the program of the community through youth camps and sessions for youth, while others found conflicts between members of the community.
The meeting was a great opportunity for us to be together as brothers and encourage each other. Our responsibilities in communities and pastoral field differ. The experiences help us to be prepared for the future ministries as Missionaries of Africa. We feel sharing the same mission with our confreres, and being part of the Society. We participate in everything apart from administrating the sacraments. Most of our missions are in a primary evangelization milieu. We are aware of our limits, not being Eucharistic ministers; we offer our service (help) in order to bring Jesus to people and people to Christ.
The sharing was appreciated by all of us. This is because it was done in respect for each other and great listening. Our expectations were fulfilled throughout the meeting. The visit of the confreres in Lusaka, during the meeting, was a blessing for us. We feel being part of the big family of Missionaries of Africa in the Southern Africa Province. The picnic and visit to our 2 parishes in Lusaka town were a time of relaxation, joking and enjoying a different atmosphere together.
By Alfred Nkundimana, Lebombo Community and Elie Sango, Namushakende community
See also: http://www.mafrome.org/stagiaires_sap13.htm

Interview with Lora Steiner

Lora Steiner - CopieWelcome to this Antislavery Campaign interview with Lora Steiner. As an Euro-American woman she explores new horizons of meaning beyond the inculcated “American Dream.” She says that in America “we don’t learn to think critically. We don’t sit in a classroom and ask each other, was your ancestor a slaveholder? What does it mean that your ancestors were forced here for free labour?” Lora invites us to be curious and creative dealing with the systemic forces that keeps enslaving us. She talks prophetically when saying that “Americans don’t know much about the world. We learn our geography through wars.” She keeps saying that if forgiveness has happened in America, reconciliation certainly hasn’t. Americans don’t recognize that a country founded on genocide and enslavement still may carry the scars, and certainly, the trauma.” Lora shares with us her wisdom as woman, writer, historian and theologian.   READ MORE

Governance, the Common Good and Democratic Transitions in Africa

The Pastoral Letter titled ‘Governance, the Common Good and Democratic Transitions in Africa, which we are about to launch, is in line with the message of the Pope Benedict XVI Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation: Africae Munus .
The Pastoral Letter points out that the Church in Africa cannot be indifferent and isolated in the face of our present socio-political and economic challenges that have become a major concern in Africa. In the spirit of peace and justice, it notes that common good, respect of people’s rights, and the promotion of good governance are the essential elements of the Gospel message.
The Pastoral Letter views human beings as being granted free will, which is the human freedom expressed through one’s choice to belong and one’s choice to express oneself freely in truth. In the exercise of this freedom in truth, human beings cannot be subjected to restriction or constraint. These considerations explain the passage to democratic transitions and indeed demand a new form of governance in Africa. The Church in Africa lives and works in a society in which she encounters the tragedy of human selfishness, pain and suffering in the midst of a politically tense environment. At the same time the Church is called upon to break the wall of powerlessness in the face of difficulties, to be overcome by living in solidarity with the bruised and maimed of God’s children. 
READ MORE (document of 18 pages in PDF slow to download!)

Church urged to fight human trafficking

Nairobi | CISA N0 0016 | http://www.cisanewsafrica.com/ | February 19, 2013
The Catholic Church in Africa has been challenged to intensify its ‘war’ against human trafficking.
Sister Maggi Kennedy of Missionaries of Our Lady of Africa (MSOLA) congregation, formerly White Sisters, told delegates at a symposium on:  From the Anti-slavery campaign to the fight against human trafficking held at Tangaza University College, langata on February 16.
“As we meet here, probably one or many women and young girls are being trafficked either locally or internationally,” she further told the symposium delegates through her presentation whose theme was: “Human Trafficking…21st Century Slaves –the silent epidemic…Our Story-our challenge.
The Catholic Nun, a renowned activist in the war against human trafficking, said this year marks a momentous moment in our history as a Church  when 125 years ago at the request of Pope Leo XIII, himself a man of vision with radical concern for social justice especially in the area of abolition of slavery and Slave Trade, appointed Cardinal Charles  Martial Lavigerie, Archbishop of Algiers in North Africa to spearhead the Catholic Church’s contribution to the abolition of slavery and the slave trade.
The symposium, jointly organized by MSOLA and Tangaza University College aimed to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Cardinal Lavigerie, Archbishop of Algiers’ entry into the anti-Slavery Campaign in 1888.
“Human trafficking,” the Catholic Nun said, “is the world’s best money earner after drugs and small arms.”
“There is a serious link between human and drug trafficking; hence a fight against one should involve the other,” she explained.
In his paper on: Fighting Genocide and a Crime against Humanity: Cardinal Lavigerie and the African Slave Trade, Tanzanian Catholic priest Father Dr Laurent Magesa said much of the cotemporary African political , economic  and social situation cannot be reasonably explained without reference to the horror of the Slave Trade.
Tonny Moses Odera, a Kenyan High Court Advocate and human rights lawyer, underscored that engaging in any acts that promote child trafficking including adopting or offering a child for fostering and offering a child for guardianship is a criminal act.
“Involved persons are liable to imprisonment for a term not less than 30 years or a fine not less than Kshs 20 million,” he explained.
Radek Malinowski, a researcher on human trafficking lamented that the area -human trafficking – is under researched.

Zambian Kwacha rebasing; the new currency in Zambia

Beware of the new currency introduced in Zambia on the 1st January 2013. The old money has lost three zeros to make life easier, especially for accounts keeping. One million Kwacha has become one thousand Kwacha with the same value. People are slowly getting use to the new paper bills and new coins called “ngwee”. Please, if you plan to come to Zambia, be sure to know the difference between the old 100 Kwacha and the new one. See below: on top is the old currency bill, still being used, which is worth 0.02 $ while the new 100 Kwacha at the bottom has a value of 20 $. Enjoy discovering the differences.

Zambian 100 Kwacha bank notes

Latest news about Jean-Bosco Masaba

The surgery took place on the 11th February successfully. Jean-Bosco was even able to come back home in the evening. Fortunately, the chirurgical intervention was a minor one even though he was under general anesthesia. Four days later, today, Jean-Bosco is still recovering and felling pain. We are planning to see the doctor today at lunch time. He is grateful for all the spiritual support and friendship you have shown him by sending your kind words through the SAP blog.
Let us keep him in our prayer. Fr. Serge St-Arneault, M.Afr
L’opération chirurgicale a eu lieu le 11 février dernier avec succès. Jean-Bosco est revenu à la maison le soir même. Heureusement, il s’agissait d’une simple intervention quoique cela a exigé une anesthésie générale. Aujourd’hui, après quatre jours, Jean-Bosco reprend du mieux. Par contre, il ressent encore des douleurs. C’est pourquoi nous prévoyons revoir le médecin de midi. Jean-Bosco est très reconnaissant pour votre le soutien spirituel et l’amitié que vous lui avez exprimé par l’entremise du blogue de SAP.
Gardons-le dans nos prières. Père Serge St-Arneault, M.Afr

Interview with Wore Ndiaye

Wore NdiayeWelcome to this Antislavery Campaign interview with Wore Ndiaye. In her book “Nous sommes coupables” (“We are guilty”) she uses her writing skills to be the voice of African Women while conducting a thorough analysis of various factors infringing the development of the African continent. She says that determination is just an outcome of the clarity of the vision of the individual. In this intimate interview Wore shows that determination. She opens her heart and shares fearlessly her own struggle to deconstruct oppressive structures of identity. She acknowledges being free but not fully liberated. Indeed, in this interview she embraces who she is!             READ MORE