By Amorain Wayikpo
On the 28th November 2014, in the Formation House of Missionaries of Africa – Merrivale South Africa, Serge Zihalirwa Boroto made his perpetual oath. He was born in 1981 in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of Congo. He started this initial formation with the Missionaries of Africa in 2005. Since January 2012, Serge Boroto has been doing his theological studies in St. Joseph Theological Institute of Cedara.
The Eucharistic celebration which was animated by the candidates of the House began at 11:00 and ended at 13:00. The presider was Fr. Christopher Chileshe, the Provincial, superior of Southern Africa Province (SAP).
Before the oath, Serge Boroto professed his faith and belief according to the Roman Catholic Church and its official teachings and Tradition. This was in view of his diaconate ordination, evidently in the presence of ocular witnesses such as Fr. Christopher Chileshe, Fr. Raphael Gasimba the former superior and rector of Merrivale community and some members of Boroto’s family.
Indeed, it was in the name of Rev. Fr. Richar Kuuia Baawobr, Superior General of the Missionaries of Africa, that Fr. Christopher received the perpetual oath of Serge Boroto which made the latter become a full member of the Society. Commenting on the readings (1 Sam 3:1-10; Psalm 103; Col 3: 12-17; John 15:9-17) chosen by the deacon to be, Fr. Christopher congratulated him for having reached that moment of responding to the Lord as Samuel: “Speak Lord your servant is listening”. He also took this opportunity to thank Serge’s family and friends because there is no doubt that a good missionary comes from a good family, in the sense of being supportive. Moreover, he especially appreciated the formators in their role, as Eli in Samuel’s call to have guided Serge toward answering the call from God. However he reminded him of the importance of being connected to Christ. Otherwise, if he misses this connection he then misses the point and everything will fall apart. On one hand to remain in Christ means that a missionary must have a restless search for God and restless love for God. On the other hand, love to others comes with its Cross. For Christ, it was manifested at Calvary, but for the disciple of Jesus, it is in sacrificial charity and in the daily activities of life. “Serge, through today’s oath you will be taking up the ‘visa for martyrdom’ which Lavigerie had pointed to. There is always a cost to love other people dearly and sincerely. It is that Cross you must be willing to take up each day for your missionary life.”
Some family members of Serge after the Mass. Brothers and sisters; daughters and brothers in law and friends of Serge came from Bukavu, France, Belgium, Canada and South Africa (Pretoria and Cape Town) to witness to this event.
The party of perpetual oath took place in the community hall called “Maison Carrée”, where the guests enjoyed themselves with a copious meal and lovely music. In the following image some people expressed their joy, one carrying the cake of the day on his head and dancing in procession.
It was really a joyful and beautiful day. The following day, on the 29th November 2014, Serge Zihalirwa Boroto was ordained deacon at St. Raphael’s Parish, Kwamzimba, by Right Reverend Father Jan De Greef, M.Afr, Bishop of the diocese, Bethlehem in South Africa.
Read this article in French at : « Serment missionnaire à Merrivale». Amorain Wayikpo, originaire du Togo et étudiant dans ce centre de formation en Afrique du Sud partage la joie de l’engagement définitif d’un congolais dans la Société des M.Afr. (lire la suite)