Georg Messer died in Germany

Georg Messer died on the 12th June 2013, at the Hospital of Munich, Germany He was 82 years old of which 56 of missionary life in Malawi and in Germany.
Georg_MesserOur confrere died today, 12.06.2013, in a Hospital of Munich. He had suffered a heart attack. He will be buried on Thursday, 20.06.2013 on the Western Cemetery in München.
Georg Messer was born in Kaltenbaum near Regensburg on 09.08.1930. After completing his secondary education with ‚Abitur’ in Regensburg, he began his formation with the White Fathers in Trier. He did his Novitiate and Theology in s’Heerenberg. There he took his Missionary Oath on 24.07.1956. He did his last year of theology in Montiviot/Scotland. In Galashiels/Scotland he was ordained priest on 16.05.1957.
After his ordination he had to serve as teacher in our minor seminary of Zaitzkofen for one year. On 12.11.1958 he was able to travel to Malawi, where he lived and worked as a missionary for 56 years. Often he had to serve as a teacher in minor seminaries (Kasina and Mtendere). But he also spent many fruitful years as parish priest in several parishes of the diocese of Dedza. In July 2012 he returned to Germany and joined your community in München.
Fr. Rolf Wigger, M.Afr, Sector Secretary

Our Parish in Kindu, DR Congo

Hello! Greetings from Kitwe! When I arrived in Zambia for holidays, from Congo, Serge asked me to write a few lines about the parish where I am working. This is what I have done here.
We are at St Rita’s Parish in the diocese of Kindu, east of Congo. Missionaries of Africa went to Kindu only after our confrere Willy Ngumbi became bishop in 2007 and asked for M.Afr community. There are two communities, at the bishop’s residence we have Bishop Ngumbi and Georges Martin (and a diocesan priest Mathieu Kapuli, the bishop’s secretary).Evans Chama
At 3km from the bishop’s house is our parish community in a township called Tokolote. We are four: Fr Hubert Bonke (German), Valentin de Belie (Belgian), Francis Ankosala, Ghanian (stagiaire) and myself, Evans Chama.
This parish was started by the Spiritans and when they left their house was occupied by a Congregation of diocesan brothers. So for quite some years the parish had no resident priests but had only some priest coming for mass mainly on Sundays. This has marked the parish in some way. One thing I find impressive is that people take the initiative to organise activities, especially the youth, without necessarily waiting for the priests to do things for them. However, there are also aspects that need refining. I give an example.
We have nine small Christian Communities (Mashirika). Every morning, except on Sunday, there is prayer in a form of celebration of the Word (no communion) in each Shirika at O5:30hrs.  There is relatively good attendance, yet, for the daily mass in the parish church you may have 10 to 15 people and most of them come after having attended the celebration in their Shirika. So we are trying to encourage the faithful to appreciate also attending mass and to avoid this “doubling” of prayer. We encourage them also by celebrating mass at least in two Shirikas every week.
At 6km from the parish, we have a fast growing outstation –St John’s Baptist where we also celebrate mass every Sunday.
One challenge here in Kindu, like for the rest of Congo, is the absence of road network. The only means to get out of this forestry area to go to Bukavu or Goma is only by air. Even most of the commodities you find on the market are brought in by air which makes the cost of living scandalously high for a rural place like Kindu. Most of our Christians are rice farmers and they share with us what they produce. We do not buy rice.
Kindu is also served by rail transport. In fact, I have the possibility of travelling by train from Kindu to Lubumbashi. But then, I have to be ready for it. Kindu-Lubumbashi is a journey, if all goes well, of not less a month. If I opt for this transport, I should reserve at least two months for travelling.
Our parish church, constructed some 46 years ago with only the capacity of about 300 persons, has become too small. So we have the project of building a new church but when you think of a pocket of cement shooting up to $50, building the house of God becomes a nightmare for us.

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The drama of life

Maurice Aduol Odhiambo 05The drama of life
While watching a film about the Uganda Martyrs, I was touched by the way they were placidly murdered by the soldiers. How can they slaughter fellow human beings like an animal on a charcoal? I am alarmed to see this kind of butchery becoming so casual. Then, I asked myself what the meaning of life is all about. Actually, life is full of drama opposing contrary occurrences.
For instance, doctors are working tirelessly to treat sick people whereas others are being assassinated. While someone is sweating to protect or save the life of a person, someone else is doing his best in order to destroy the existence of someone else as it is happening in war zone countries. Efforts to promote Justice and peace are annihilated by political destabilization of peaceful co-existence. Many couples are unsuccessful in procreating children while millions of abortions are performed. Winning football teams celebrate when losers are saddened.
These few examples tell me that I am constantly squeezed between conflicting realities. What shall I do? Am I simply acting like a spectator within a collective drama? Or, am I willing to face the challenge to do my best to make the world a better place to live in? I see myself becoming co-actors for a better world in a fighting spirit. It is not like a soldier throwing prisoners on a charcoal but as an athlete running to gain the reward reserved for the children of God.
By Maurice Odhiambo, stagiaire, Dombe community, Mozambique

CfSC May 2013 Basic Needs Basket and Press Statement

CfSC May 02 2013
The Centre for Social Concern (CfSC), has worryingly observed that the 2013/14 national budget, just like the preceding 2012/13 national budget, is not people centred. While acknowledging the fact that the current budget has been framed in the context of a stagnating economy that is struggling to emerge from a downturn, CfSC believes that government should have balanced the twofold equally important tasks of stabilising the country’s economy by giving incentives to the private sector (as the engine of growth) and also protecting the vulnerable through adequate social spending to reduce poverty.
 While acknowledging the troubling reality that Malawi is now back under the wings of the Bretton Woods Institutions (IMF and World Bank) CfSC believes that in engaging these institutions Malawi government should do so in cognisance of the lessons learnt from the recent past. READ MORE