Shortly before the end of last year, I filled my agenda up to September this year because I was due for home leave. All of the sudden I got a request from PAC (Province de l’Afrique Centrale) to go for home service. Since I knew that my name was on a waiting list as far back as 2006, there was little ground for negotiation. Consequently I reviewed my programme to make it correspond with the new situation. Easier said than done! Indeed without the help of my community, I would have missed the plane since I finished to pack up only a couple of hours before my flight.
On the other hand, my confreres and friends around Lusaka transformed what could have been an emotionally exhausting period into a merry week. Have you ever imagined a farewell party each and every day from Monday to Friday? You people are marvelously good! I was overwhelmed by your generosity, your love which was beautifully expressed in a variety of ways. I will ever be grateful to you! What the Lord has done for me, I can’t not tell it all… Just allow me to ask Him to continue blessing you abundantly. By the way you are welcome to Bujumbura!
Fraternally, Marc Nsanzurwimo, M.Afr
As part of our formation, the stagiaires meet at Nazaré Centre in Beira from 16th to 21st February. Prior arrangements took place regarding our travel documents and means of transport. Nazaré is really beautiful. It is run by the M.Afr on behalf of the Diocese of Beira. Everything took place in a very conducive environment despite the hot and humid weather. However, things went on well thanks to the generosity, the eagerness and good will of all the participants.
Personal prayer, moments of sharing and the Eucharistic celebration at 17:30 were our daily timetable with the exception of an outing on 19th at the beach next to Beira town.
We were warmly welcomed by the Sector Superior of Mozambique; Fr Timothée Bationo. He expressed his heartfelt sentiments of joy seeing us around. The mission looks bright. Fr Hugh Seenan gave us a brief history of the Church in Mozambique going back to 1560. We had two coordinators: Fr Venerato Babaine and Fr Richard Ujwigowa.
Each one of us got a chance to share his experience as a stagiaire. We allowed ourselves to be challenged to listen with our hearts more than our ears.
Our missionary experience calls for commitment, courage, determination, perseverance, a sense of focus and an attitude of prayer. These values were actually expressed in the sharing as being essential elements of our discernment and response to the call to be missionaries.
Sadly, on 18th February, we learnt the death of the father of our brother Martin Somda. We felt called upon to let our sense of brotherhood be a reality in such an unfortunate circumstance. We marked a pause and prayed for his father. Martin left the meeting and went to Burkina Faso to be with his family. Then, we had a thanksgiving mass at the sector house with the confreres in Beira on the last day.
Indeed, we had a fruitful meeting. We would like to thank all those who have made it possible for us to live such enriching moments: the Provincial Council, the Sector Delegates and the Coordinators. We thank especially Frs. Richard Ujwigowa, Jean de Dieu Bukuru and Jean Bosco Nibigira who transported us to and from the Zambia-Mozambique border to Beira. Thanks to all who have contributed to this unforgettable experience.
Armand Bamouni, Stagiaire in Serenje, Zambia.
Yesterday the 24th February 2015, Filiyanus Ekka received the sad news that his cousin, Noel Kishore, had died. Noel leaves a wife and one daughter. He was in the Indian Army and a troop will bring his body home tomorrow. May he rest in peace. Let us keep Noel, his family, and Filiyanus in our prayers.
Message sent by Bill Turnbull, Delegate Superior in Malawi.