25 years Chezi Parish (Lilongwe, Malawi) & Catechist Chagwa, 50 years Jean Arnaud who also bye to Africa – 12 August 2017


Chezi 01By Brother Landry Busagara

On the twelfth of August, Chezi Parish had a great joy of celebrating 25 years of its existence. We were so happy on that day. We have been preparing for it for more than a year. Then when the day arrived we were really excited to celebrate it and to welcome all our guests who came to help us to live in that big event. We started with Mass which was presided by his lordship Archbishop Tharsicius G. Ziyaye.

During the celebration, just at the beginning of Mass, our Parish Priest Father Simeon Kalore welcomed everyone and wished them a good time at Chezi Parish. Then, we listened to the history of the jubilant parish which started in July 1992. Before its establishment, there were only centres which were really far from each other in other parishes. This made the work for the priests and Christians considerable. The distance was very long and the Christians could not receive sacraments frequently. That is why the Bishop of that time allowed the parish to start. Chezi Parish is called so because of its location, it is at the mountain of Chezi. Now The parish has more than 13,000 Christians.

Something that I did not mention yet here but so important is that we were also saying ‘’good bye’’ to Father Jean Arnaud who has been working in that parish for 18 years. He is leaving for good very soon for another apostolate in Lyon-France. We were also celebrating 25 years of service of one of our catechists who has been working in the Parish since 1992. At the beginning of Mass, we also had an opportunity of hearing their history of service in the parish. Moreover, in this mass more than 100 young boys and girls received the sacrament of confirmation as new witnesses of God.

When the Bishop of the Archdiocese of Lilongwe started Mass, he could not hide his joy. He said that this is a time of praise, a time of celebrating all the wonders of the Lord, all that the Lord has been doing in Chezi Parish. He thanked God for the gifts of Father Yohane and the catechist in the Parish. Even in his homily, he came back on that joy as he told us that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are really visible in the Parish. God gives to each one of us his own gifts, then on our turn, it is up to us to use them fruitfully. There is no gift or talent to be neglected, even the smallest one is so important if it is used well and with love. What we believe in has to be shown by our works, by our way of serving our brothers and sisters because all that is for the greater glory of our Lord.

Before we finished Mass, Father Jean Arnauld talked to us to express his great joy and how he was so grateful for the warm welcoming of Malawians for all the years he has been working here in this country. He still believes that though he is going far away from Malawi, one day we will meet again, here on earth or in heaven. He said: ‘’A moyo salekana’’. Father Simeon Kalore, the Parish Priest also thanked again everyone for the support, especially the Archbishop to have chosen to come to Chezi in spite of all the duties that he has. He said ‘’ Zikomo kwa mbiri’’. He thanked all the people of Chezi Parish, each one in his place for the responsibility taken so that the celebration goes well.

Our Provincial Father Felix Phiri was present and when time was given to him so that he says a word, he said that, he, too, was so grateful to the Bishop, to Father Jean Arnaud for his devotion to the mission in Malawi, for the years he worked in Malawi as Missionary of Africa. The Society will always be grateful. The Provincial also welcomed Father Christian Munyaneza, M.Afr who has just arrived in the country and will be working in Mua Parish. He ended his speech by calling all the Missionaries of Africa who were present and the MSOLA as well to come to the altar and sing our hymn ‘Sancta Maria’.

The Archbishop, his Lordship, Tharcisius G. Ziyaye, before he closed the Mass also said that he is so happy and was so impressed by the improvement of Chezi Parish. He did not forget to mention that it is Father Jean Arnaud who taught him how to ride a motorbike when he was a young priest. He said that all his words are to say thanks.

As we concluded our Mass, we were all invited for a meal which was shared to everyone with great joy.

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Mafrwestafrica lettre du 15 août 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

« 77000 euros remis à la police » une histoire forte, celle d’un homme qui n’a pas voulu s’approprier une telle somme. (lire la suite)

« Blanchiment d’argent en Afrique » Deux des affaires marquantes évoquées dans le dernier rapport de la cellule chargée de lutter contre la criminalité financière, publié fin juillet, ont directement trait à l’Afrique. (lire la suite)

« Pesticides au Burkina » Les producteurs maraichers de la capitale, ou les agriculteurs en milieu rural, utilisent des pesticides et herbicides dont ils ignorent la qualité ou la composition. (lire la suite)

« Attaque terroriste à Ouagadougou » une attaque terroriste a fait 18 morts à Ouagadougou, lors de l’attaque d’un café restaurant dans la nuit du 13 au 14 août 2017. (lire la suite)

« Résultats élections au Kenya » les résultats proclamant la réélection de Kenyatta ont été publiés mais l’opposition de l’accepte pas. (lire la suite)

Témoignages 

« Réaction au décès du Père Charles Sarti » un message reçu d’une personne qui a beaucoup échangé avec lui. (lire la suite)

« Journée missionnaire mondiale 2017 » le texte du pape François pour la journée missionnaire mondiale à venir, le 22 octobre 2017. (lire la suite)

« Biographies des pères Forgues et Boinot » ces deux Pères Blanc qui ont vécu la mission en Afrique de l’Ouest et sont décédés l’un en 2015, l’autre en 2016 – textes tirés du Petit Echo. (lire la suite)

Dialouge interreligieux

« Psychologie et Islam » Al Razi, grand médecin perse des IXème et Xème siècles, est le fondateur du premier établissement psychiatrique au monde. (lire la suite)

« Mosquées en Algérie » il y a plus de 20 ans que l’état essaie de contrôler l’espace religieux, sans beaucoup de succès. (lire la suite)

« Formation pour prêtres et imams » une suggestion du secrétaire du Conseil pontifical pour le dialogue interreligieux. (lire la suite)

« Message du pape pour la paix » Le pape François invite les religions à « prier et travailler ensemble pour la paix », à l’occasion d’une rencontre interreligieuse organisée au Japon. (lire la suite)

Justice et Paix

« Nouvelles de l’AET Ségou » le dernier bulletin de cette association qui œuvre pour les enfants en situation difficile. (lire la suite)

« L’Afrique change-t-elle ? » un texte du Père Maurice Oudet qui pousse à réfléchir sur cette question fondamentale. (lire la suite)

« Lutter ensemble contre l’esclavage moderne » Il existe un lien entre l’exploitation de la nature et l’exploitation de la vie humaine. Il existe également une corrélation directe entre la migration et le trafic humain. (lire la suite)

« Migrants encore jetés en mer » 180 migrants africains qui avaient pris place en bateau ont été jetés par-dessus bord par des passeurs au large du Yémen. (lire la suite)

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Alassane Ouattara en Côte d’Ivoire » l’actuel président de ce pays affirme qu’il ne se représentera pas pour les présidentielles de 2020. (lire la suite)

« Burkina : Bassolé inculpé pour trahison » l’ancien ministre des Affaires étrangères est finalement inculpé de “trahison”. Ses avocats disent qu’il n’a rien à craindre dans ce dossier”. (lire la suite)

« Fonctionnaires fantômes ? »  Au Burkina, la bancarisation des salaires a pour but de lutter contre les fonctionnaires « fictifs », un problème qui existe aussi en Côte d’Ivoire, au Nigéria et dans d’autres pays africains. (lire la suite)

« Résultats référendum Mauritanien » certains sénateurs refusent de tenir compte des résultats du référendum constitutionnel : le oui l’emporte très fortement. (lire la suite)

« Fosses communes à Kidal au Mali » au moins deux fosses communes ont été découvertes par la Mission des Nations unies au Mali (Minusma) dans la région de Kidal, dans le nord du Mali. (lire la suite)

Words of thanks from Fr. Martin Kasongo, M.Afr


Martin Kasongo 09By Martin Kasongo, M.Afr

Dear Confrères!

Join me first of all in thanking God for the love and for all the mercies he lavished upon me by allowing me to be ordained priest to serve in his vineyard. Dear confreres, I write to you more especially to thank you for your support before, during and after ordination. Each and every one of you, near or far, in one way or another, contributed to the preparation and the success of my ordination. I really appreciate your spiritual, material and moral support. Your support was very strengthening to me. I was very privileged and blessed by your presence during ordination and thanksgiving mass. This gesture was very encouraging and assuring to both my family and the parish. Unity and support are the echoes I receive from my family, from the parishioners of Kabundi Parish (St. Stephen) and from all the people who participated in my ordination and thanksgiving Mass. The parish and my family testified and affirmed that I have people around me.

Allow me also, dear confreres, to thank the community of Ndola (Shinde Street), Didasio and Francis in particular for the energy they put in to welcome confreres and prepare for the reception in Ndola. Dear Didasio and Francis, I am very grateful for your help and support. 

To all of you dear confreres, I say thank you very much and may God bless you. I also invite you to come in number and give the same support to our friend and confrere Frederick Mulenga Chungu on his priestly ordination this coming Saturday. May God bless us all and our families; may he make fruitful our life and our mission. United in prayer!

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Twenty- Five Years of Missionary Priesthood of Malachy Oleru, M.Afr


Malachy Oleru 25 years 2By Malachy Oleru, M.Afr

My final journey to Beira was safe, except for my luggage that arrived 48 hours late and a somewhat clumsy and inconsiderate air ticket booking from Raptim. Cheap things are not always cheap! The services of Kenya Airways leave much to be desired too, but that is a topic for another day. The presence at the airport, of the Missionaries of Africa led by Boris, was gratifying. For me, a new mission has started in Mozambique after a 25 year spell elsewhere.

I started my language learning about a week ago and still wonder why at my age, I have to be saddled, beside English and French, with the learning in Africa, of another colonial language – Portuguese! But Missionary life is “For better, for worse”, right? So nothing will becloud the hopes of this nascent divine mission to the “African world”.

Homily under a car park.

My ordination anniversary date, August 8, came up within two weeks of my arrival. The Delegation insists on a celebration, at least to water the seeds of my new mission. 25 years is not a joke, they said. It is akin to what a diocesan priest at home called “Priesthood with hard labour”. Hear! Hear!! And before I could say ‘Obrigado’, Boris Yabre, with M.Afr students at home was up and doing. Rafael Gasimba ‘sailed’ from Dombe land with the stagiaire. Frank Mbala Kalala and Florent Sibiri Sawadogo with another C.A.T. ‘flew’ in from Sussundenga. Fidel Salazar del Muro and ‘senior apostle’ stagiaire Olivier, ‘astral-travelled’ from Centro de Nazaré, just less than five minutes’ drive away! Friends, brothers and sisters from the other mothers, made the day at the Delegation House as Julian Kasiya and Pierre Kabwe Lukusa from Tete Mission, could only participate – electronically.

Anointed, (literally and metaphorically) to preside over the Eucharistic celebration, the car park of the house was the best temporary house of God. The students did a good job of cleaning. Being the memorial feast of the great preacher of the Word, St Dominic, the readings were taken from the references for the day. My reflection was on Luke 9:57-62.

Three calls, three men, one mission: “follow me”,

The rule of three does not always elicit a Trinitarian response. “I will follow you wherever you go”, appears generous, spontaneous, and immediate but also simplistic, if not frivolous. It sounds like playing to the gallery, not counting the cost, bordering on presumption. Jesus, the ‘Novice Master’ ‘remembers’ St Ignatius of Loyola’s discernment of the Spirit (Go on, argue for anachronism!): “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head”. Jesus brings the dreamer to the reality of the mission. It is not for the feeble-minded, not for dreamers (even if sometimes we dream at the General Chapters!). You must count the cost. You must become aware of the challenges. You must evaluate what you are leaving behind. You must be ready for sacrifices. There is no guarantee for easy life and assurance for security: “Certified for martyrdom, do you agree?”

Even when the initiative comes from the Master (it always does), “Follow Me”, the response is hesitant, like coming from one who is not ready, who is more worried about family duties than concerned for the mission. A natural realist, his response is to first go and do his natural duty: “Lord, let me first go and bury my father”. Yes, there is a duty to perform and the best way to avoid responsibility is to say “I have responsibilities”! And Jesus’ response is simple: “Leave the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God”. You are not the saviour, not even of your family, for it is not your duty that saves. You have your path to follow. Be detached from the accidentals of life to re-focus on the essentials. Remain resolute and vigilant.

The third encounter and dialogue in vocation discernment is like the first. The attachment is not as serious as the first. He only needs to “…first say farewell to those at home”.  “No one who puts his hands to the plough and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God”, was again Jesus’ response. Mission is about being resolute and ‘staying fit’ for the kingdom of God.

Conclusion: indefectible, not infallible.

Grace is mine to say that in more than 25 years, I have journeyed with Jesus through these three stages of call-response paradigms. I delayed for five years, my missionary vocation to attend to family and personal needs. Then, when I thought I was ready, I also thought that I could shift those family responsibilities to my brother in USA. Well, he got murdered a year before my Missionary oath, and I said ‘zut alors!’ – whatever that meant. Then I understood that I must follow Jesus ‘naked’; re-engineer my assurances and security packages to fit into his plan so that “no one takes this honour on himself…”  Ever since I did, passing through thick and thin of the mission, I have been sustained by this word of the Master in response to Peter’s prevarications: “Anyone who left father, mother, sister, brother… on account of my word, shall receive a hundred fold…and in addition, eternal life”. I have, believe me; for God lives in an eternal now, and I am satisfied. And I know that if I have not stayed infallible, I have remained graciously indefectible.

One Down: ‘One’ To Go; ordination of Martin Kasongo, M.Afr


Martin Kasongo 2017 copie
Fr. Martin Kasongo, M.Afr

By Everisto Mwelwa, M.Afr

One Zambian M.Afr was ordained on 4th August 2017: there is yet another one to be ordained this month. So ‘One down: One to go’; Habemus Fr. Martin Kasongo, M.Afr. This brings the number of Zambian Missionaries of Africa to thirty-two.

All the roads from M.Afr communities in Zambia and abroad were leading to Ndola Diocese’s Cathedral of Christ the King. Confreres and M.Afr students filled up our house in Ndola to full capacity. A moment of fraternal sharing, updating and thanksgiving to God.

In his homily, the ordaining Bishop Dr. Alick Banda urged the twelve deacons to take a leaf from St. Jean-Marie Vianney, whose feast fell on that day. St. Vianney, though not so intellectually gifted, was ascetical, zealous, prayerful and humble. The deacons were urged to start and end the day on their knees; meaning in prayer. The Bishop also highlighted that the Catholic faith, after 125 years in Zambia, has given three General Superiors to three Missionary Congregations, namely the Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers), Dominican Sisters and Franciscan Missionary Sisters of Assisi. A commendable gesture of maturity in faith.

Martin Kasongo 2017 03After the ordination ceremony, a reception was held at our house in Ndola. It was a colourful and prayerful occasion to thank God for the gift of Fr. Martin to the Church.

For Fr. Martin’s Thanksgiving Mass, confreres went to St. Stephen Parish in Kabundi, Chingola on Sunday the 6th August. The parishioners and local clergy organised the celebration well and it was attended by many confreres. Thereafter, another reception was organised at the Salesians of Don Bosco’s school and residence in Chingola. Indeed, a moment of thanking God for the self-giving of Fr. Martin. The Zambian Sector of the Southern Africa Province (SAP) is thanking all the people of God who organised and attended these celebrations. May God bless you all.

Fr. Martin Kasongo, M.Afr is appointed to the Democratic Republic of Congo in the Diocese of Kasongo (yes, same name!). Wishing him a fruitful and grace-filled ministry to the people of God in DR Congo.

On 19th August 2017, all the roads will be leading to St. Peter’s Parish, Nchelenge in Mansa Diocese for the ordination of Deacon Frederick Mulenga Chungu, M.Afr. You are all invited and welcome to witness to this event. See you there.

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Mafrwestafrica lettre du 30 juillet 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

« SMNDA nouveau conseil général » quelques informations récentes à ce propos. Des changements mais aussi de la continuité  (lire la suite)

« Responsables M.Afr de par le monde » des informations actuelles au sujet de ceux qui ont un rôle important dans la société des Missionnaires d’Afrique  (lire la suite)

« Pose 1ère pierre EHPAD Billère » cet EHPAD existe depuis longtemps, mais est appelé à accueillir plus de confrères Pères Blancs (lire la suite)

Témoignages 

« Décès du Père Charles Sarti » ce confrère qui a passé pratiquement toute sa vie au Burkina Faso (lire la suite)

« Légion d’honneur pour une carmélite libanaise » Sœur Mariam An-nour, déjà promue officier de l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques en 2010, vient d’être élue chevalier de la légion d’honneur  ce 14 juillet 2017 (lire la suite)

« Marche d’imams contre le terrorisme » une soixantaine d’imams étaient présents à cette marche organisée par l’imam Chalgoumi et l’écrivain juif Marek Halter (lire la suite)

Histoire

« Départ des M.Afr du Mozambique » un texte très long du père Frank Nolan au sujet de cet événement qui est loin d’être indifférent (lire la suite)

Dialogue interreligieux

« Requiem pour le père Jacques Hamel » un livre d’un musulman au sujet de l’attentat qui a coûté la vie au père Jacques Hamel (lire la suite)

« Burkini, saison 2, épisodes 2 et 3 » un article du Monde et un paru dans l’Express qui nous parlent de la situation « légale » de l’apparence des femmes dans leurs quotidien (lire la suite)

« Lutter contre la violence » quel est le rôle des leaders religieux pour lutter contre la violence de par le monde ? (lire la suite)

Justice et Paix

« Comment donner des nouvelles » sur le site de Zenit, à Rome, des orientations suggérées pour que les nouvelles soient véritablement conformes à la réalité (lire la suite)

« Où en est le social en Côte d’Ivoire ? » sur le site de Jeune Afrique. Le gouvernement a privilégié l’économie et le long terme – ce qui est excellent en soi –, mais en minimisant les facteurs sociaux et le court terme (lire la suite)

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Evolution préoccupante au Mali » à l’issue de combats meurtriers, le Gatia – groupe touareg – perd du terrain face à la CMA – coordination des mouvements de l’Azawad (lire la suite)

« Législatives au Sénégal ? »  Dernier jour de campagne au Sénégal avant les législatives de ce dimanche 30 juillet. L’opposition craint des fraudes (lire la suite)

« Procès au Burkina », à savoir celui de l’ex-directeur de publication du journal Le Soir qui était face à la justice, ce jeudi 27 juillet. Il est poursuivi pour diffamation par six magistrats (lire la suite)

« Togo, élections à venir » Avant que ne se tiennent les élections législatives, le pays devra trancher sur la composition de la Commission électorale nationale indépendante -Ceni- (lire la suite)

Meeting of Young Confreres in the Second Term of Mission in Kasisi, Lusaka, Zambia.


Young Confreres 2nd term Kasisi Zambia 01bPhilip Meraba, M.Afr

The young confreres in the second term of mission had a three-week meeting at the Retreat Centre of the Sisters of Little Servants of Mary in Kasisi, Lusaka, Zambia, from the 2nd till the 23rd July, 2017.

We were 13 participants from different countries across Africa and Asia with two facilitators; Rev Frs. Timothée Bationo and Bernard Ugeux, M.Afr working in Zambia & DR. Congo respectively.

The participants were almost of the same generation. It was a great occasion offered by the Society of the Missionaries of Africa to encounter one another once more after years of separation due to various involvement in different countries. Through sharing of various missionary experiences, the participants could recharge their batteries in order to take off once more with a new missionary spirit and zeal.

Joys, excitement as much as discouragement and difficulties over the years were the focus of our sharing done spontaneously in openness and mutual trust. We sympathised, encouraged or even amiably confronted one another. Despite some few painful experiences, none ever regretted to have been a member of the Society but felt rather more fortified and convinced of our missionary calling amidst the challenges.

Different moderators, including two Sisters from Lusaka, let various sessions on sexuality, addictions, spirituality, pastoral ministry, leadership, Justice & Peace, religious encounter, media and finances. The session on community life was given by Felix Phiri, the Provincial of the Southern Africa Province (SAP).

It was not business all through. We also had wonderful moments of relaxation together, outings to interesting places around Lusaka, celebration of birthdays and missionary oath anniversaries. We also visited M.Afr communities around Lusaka and joined parishes for Sunday liturgies. A barbecue was prepared in our honour by FENZA community where we had the chance of interacting with most confreres around Lusaka, together with former novices who were on their way to join their various countries for their apostolic stage.

The participants had the great joy of witnessing the historical celebration of the 125th anniversary of the evangelisation of the Church in Zambia by the White Fathers and other missionaries. This was a national feast and the White Fathers were highly recognised by the Zambian Church authorities for the greater role played in planting the seed of faith in this country. Our Superior General, Rev.Fr. Stanley Lubungo was present at this occasion and he paid us a courtesy visit at Kasisi Centre. We had the privilege of fraternal sharing with him on some key issues concerning the future and vision of our humble Lavigerie family.

Prayer was never left out. The whole group was divided into teams and we celebrated the Liturgy of the Hours as well as the Eucharist.

Young Confreres 2nd term Kasisi Zambia 03bWe are highly indebted to the leadership of the General Council for such memorable opportunity offered to us to meet, learn, encourage one another and re-energise ourselves. We appreciate the good organisation, simplicity and wisdom with which our two elder brother facilitators, Timothée and Bernard, accompanied us throughout the session. Our sincere gratitude goes to the leadership of SAP; Felix Phiri, the Provincial, Venerato Babaine, his Delegate in Zambia and John Itaru, the Provincial Treasurer. We thank the little Sisters of Mary and the whole personnel for the pleasant accommodation and feeding.

We are indeed well refreshed, equipped and ready to go back to our missionary stations with more enthusiasm to serve. May Our Lady of Africa precedes us, Amen!

A ‘Finale’ on 125 Years of Catholic Faith in Zambia – July 15, 2017.


By Everisto Mwelwa, M.Afr

125 years Catholic Church in Zambia 03
Catholics gather in the show ground during the celebration of the 125 years of the Catholic Church.

Logo 125 Catho ZambiaIt has taken a whole year of various celebrations to mark a hundred and twenty-five years since the Catholic faith was brought to Zambia by the missionaries in 1891. Part of the opening of these celebrations was the Eucharistic celebration held at Mambwe-Mwela on 6th August, 2016. It is at Mambwe-Mwela where the first missionaries settled down in the present day Republic of Zambia.

Catholic dioceses and parishes in Zambia held various celebrations to mark all these years of Catholic faith in Zambia. Kasama Archdiocese, as an example, closed the year with a Eucharistic celebration held at Chilubula (Mary Help of Christians Parish) on 24th June, 2017 on which day two deacons were ordained to priesthood.

For the national celebrations to mark the end of 125 years of Catholic faith in Zambia, two days were set aside in the Archdiocese of Lusaka. On Friday, the 14th July, 2017, all the roads were leading to Lusaka from all the Catholic dioceses in Zambia. This day was dedicated to the Catholic Youth. They had various activities and talks in the Cathedral of the Child Jesus (Lusaka) and then proceeded to the Agricultural Show grounds for the Eucharistic celebration. The youth and their patrons/matrons had a coloured procession of about three quarters of an hour accompanied by two musical bands. At the end of Mass, the Catholic bishops came to convey their wishes to the youth.

125 years Catholic Church in Zambia 07
VICE-PRESIDENT Inonge Wina receives a present from Lusaka Archbishop Telesphore Mpundu during the 125 years commemoration of Catholicism in Zambia in Lusaka yesterday. PICTURE: CHANDA MWENYA

The final ‘finale’ was the Eucharistic celebration held in the Agricultural Show grounds of Lusaka. The Apostolic Nuncio, Most Rev Julio Murat, all the Zambian Catholic bishops and the two archbishops were present. Two bishops from Malawi and Zimbabwe also came. AMECEA sent a representative. The Superior General of the Missionaries of Africa, Fr. Stanley Lubungo, who happened to be in Zambia at that time also attended. Indeed, not fewer than twenty-five Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers) were present!  The government of the Republic of Zambia was represented by the Vice-President, Inonge Wina, and several ministers.

The main celebrant of the Eucharist was the Apostolic Nuncio but the homily was delivered by the Archbishop of Lusaka, Telesphore-George Mpundu. In his homily, the Archbishop highlighted the dedication and self-giving of the early missionaries despite the difficulties, many of whom died in their early years of missionary life due to diseases. He urged the present day Catholics to take a leaf from them; quoting the theme of Mansa Diocese “We are the Missionaries of today”. Archbishop Mpundu urged Catholic faithful of today to be more self-reliant. He also underscored the holistic human developmental work carried out by the Catholic Church in Zambia.

One can easily estimate about five thousand Catholic faithful attended the celebration, not counting the priests and the religious.

Medal honour 125 years Catho Zambia JPEGAt the end of the celebration, medals were presented to the Catholic faithful who have dedicated to evangelisation. These were dedicated men and women, laity and religious. For the Missionaries of Africa, three confreres were decorated with medals, namely Henk van Kessel, Jean-Luc Gouiller and Robert Lavertu.

A colourful celebration to mark the ‘finale’ of 125 years of Catholic faith in Zambia.

Links:

Catholics, State pledge unity to fight for people

Catholics celebrate 125 years of existence in Zambia

AMECEA: Chairman applauds ZCCB for the 125 Anniversary of Catholic Faith in the Country

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Mafrwestafrica lettre du 28 juin 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

« Pèlerinage aux saints d’Afrique en Suisse » une célébration annuelle dont le père Claude Maillard nous a envoyé des nouvelles (lire la suite)

« Toujours l’insécurité au Mali » 2 morts et des dizaines de civils évacués suite à une attaque près de Bamako (lire la suite)

« Approbation de G5 Sahel par le conseil de sécurité » un appui qui était attendu depuis longtemps. Mais qui va financer ? (lire la suite)

Témoignages 

« Fête des jubilaires à Bry sur Marne » jubilaires parmi lesquels ils sont nombreux à avoir vécu en Afrique de l’Ouest (lire la suite)

« Décès du père Joseph Olivaud » à l’âge de 94 ans, le 9 juin dernier. Lui aussi a passé de nombreuses années au Burkina, après treize ans en Guinée (lire la suite)

« Les Pères Blancs au Sénégal » un article rédigé par le père de Benoist, qui n’a pas encore été publié car il vient seulement d’être retrouvé dans les archives de l’auteur (lire la suite)

Dialogue interreligieux

« Islamophobie aux USA et en Grande Bretagne » les actes islamophobes sont en hausse aux Etats Unis comme au Royaume uni (lire la suite)

« Education contre le radicalisme » c’est par le biais d’une éducation bien conçue que les jeunes pourront acquérir une vision objective et humaine du monde et des autres (lire la suite)
« Les musulmans au défi de Daech » compte rendu d’un livre de deux auteurs musulmans, livre facile à lire et qui donne des perspectives d’ouverture (lire la suite)

« Vœux pour fin du ramadan » comme chaque année, plusieurs messages ont été envoyés par les églises locales pour la fin de ce temps de jeûne (lire la suite)

Justice et Paix

« Le film ‘Bayiri’, la ‘patrie’ » l’interview d’un cinéaste burkinabè qui a réalisé un film sur le problème que le retour dans la « patrie » pose, après de très longues années en Côte d’Ivoire (lire la suite)

« Journée mondiale des réfugiés » le 18 juin dernier, au moment de l’angélus, le pape s’est exprimé comme chaque année à cette occasion (lire la suite)

« Tchad : l’opposition dénonce la corruption » sur le site de RFI, cet article ainsi que trois autres au sujet de ce pays (lire la suite)

« Urgence humanitaire au Nigéria » 8,5 millions de personnes réparties dans les Etats de Borno, de l’Adamawa et de Yobe ont besoin d’une assistance urgente (lire la suite)

« Migrants portés disparus » dans le désert du Ténéré, au Niger, une cinquantaine de personnes en route vers la Libye sont portées disparues (lire la suite)

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Présidentielles Côte d’Ivoire 2020 ? » d’après Henri Konan Bédié, Guillaume Soro ne serait pas intéressé à proposer sa candidature (lire la suite)

« Kagame candidat aux présidentielles » Le président sortant, Paul Kagamé, a été désigné sans surprise candidat à l’élection présidentielle par son parti. Elections le 4 août prochain (lire la suite)

Mafrwestafrica lettre du 16 juin 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

« Ordinations dans la province d’Afrique Occidentale » les noms de ceux qui seront ordonnés prêtres et diacres en cette année 2017 (lire la suite)

« Missionnaire d’Afrique en Afrique de l’Ouest » une mise à jour des listes des missionnaires dans la Province, et de ceux qui en sont originaires (lire la suite)

« Blaise Compaoré sera-t-il jugé ? » quelques informations et articles sur le site de la revue « Jeune Afrique » (lire la suite)

Témoignages

« Nouvel évêque de Ghardaia » c’est Mgr John McWilliam qui remplace Mgr Claude Rault comme évêque du Sahara (lire la suite)

« Jeûner au Nord de l’Europe » difficile de suivre les règles du ramadan, quand le soleil reste visible 22 heures sur 24 (lire la suite)

« Vivre la mission aujourd’hui » au Nigéria pour ce Missionnaire d’Afrique originaire de Tanzanie, qui est à la fois curé de paroisse et travaillant pour JPIC (lire la suite)

« Communauté témoin à Lubumbashi » un texte de Theobald Muchunguzi, originaire de Tanzanie et qui témoigne après 7 ans dans la paroisse Ste Bernadette (lire la suite)

Dialogue interreligieux

« Féministes musulmanes en Indonésie » deux personnes sont citées, Raden Ajeng Kartini, décédée en 1904, et Zainah Anwar, fondatrice de Sisters in islam  (lire la suite)

«  Œcuménisme », pour la fête du patriarche œcuménique de Constantinople Bartholomée Ier, le pape François lui a fait parvenir un message (lire la suite)

« Femmes et dialogue interreligieux » sur le journal « La Croix » la contribution des femmes au dialogue interreligieux ne doit pas se limiter aux approches domestiques (lire la suite)

Justice et Paix

« Plus de justice au Mali ? » un effort de lutte contre la corruption, une loi prévue pour réviser la constitution, mais une opposition se manifeste (lire la suite)

« Film de Pierre Yameogo sur la Côte d’Ivoire » un cinéaste burkinabè exprime sa colère contre ce pays dans lequel tant de ses compatriotes vivent (lire la suite)

« Menaces contre les écoles au Mali » dans le centre du Mali, des centaines d’écoles ferment à cause de l’insécurité (lire la suite)

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Force du G5 Sahel ? » Que penser de cette force de lutte contre le djihadisme ? L’Amérique et la Grande Bretagne ne sont pas partants…(lire la suite)

« Pétrole au Tchad » le gouvernement tchadien et le consortium pétrolier qui exploite le bassin de Doba se sont entendus, vendredi 9 juin, à N’Djamena (lire la suite)

« Médecine par internet au Mali » une nouveauté intéressante dans ce pays pour permettre aux gens de prendre leur rendez-vous médicaux par internet (lire la suite)

Priestly ordinations Lusaka-Montreal.


Priestly ordinations Lusaka-Montreal.

By Serge St-Arneault, M.Afr. Director of the Afrika Centre, Montreal.

Ordination Cathedral of the Child Jesus May 27 2017 01On May 27, 2017, I was privileged to take part of the priestly ordination of 14 new priests, among them some Jesuits and Capuchins together with diocesan priests. Two thousands Christians gathered inside the Cathedral of Child Jesus in Lusaka vibrated along the beautiful liturgy by expressing its joy, especially when the names of all those ‘handsome’ young men, according to one of the speakers, were announced.

It happened on the day before my final departure from Zambia. I took off again from Lilongwe on Wednesday to arrive in Montreal on June 1 at noon time. By then, I was very far away from Africa where I lived 25 out of my last 30 years of life.

banniere_anime Centre AfrikaI went home, meaning to my mothers’ place, after few days at St-Hubert Street where I will be stationed by August 1 as Director of the Afrika Centre. Though still on holiday, I wanted to come back to Montreal yesterday to be present this morning to the priestly ordination of a Cameroonian into the Archdiocese of Montreal. Reverent Claude Ngodji was ordained by Mgr. Christian Lépine in a church dedicated to Our Lady of Africa.

Notre-Dame-dAfrique Montréal 02This Catholic Mission is celebrating its 4th year of existence. This community brings together Africans from all over French Speaking African countries who have settled all over Montreal Island. Four major trends make this community special: fraternal gathering, meaningful liturgy, education into faith and opening to a changing world.

I am grateful to witness such great moments into the life of the Church. Free, I went to Africa at the age of 26 in 1981, I feel also free to come back to my mother land today. My joy is to see that Africa is no longer a remote and unknown far distant land but very much present in Montreal with its vibrant faith and hope.

Ordiantion Claude Ngodji

See also the translation into French:

Espace Perso Serge logo

Let us rejoice with Hervé Tougma who will be ordained priest on June 1, 2017 in Burkina Faso.


Carte ordination 1- 2017 frontShalom,

Recevez mes salutations de Jérusalem. Je viens par ce présent mail vous faire part de mon ordination presbytérale qui aura lieu le 1er Juillet prochain au Burkina Faso. Bonne fête de Pentecôte!  

Shalom,

Greetings from Jerusalem. I wish to share with you the news about my priestly ordination which will take place on July 1 in Burkina Faso. Happy Pentecost Feast!

Hervé TOUGMA, Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers), St Anne’s Church P.O. Box 19079, 19 Lions’ Gate Street (near Lions’ Gate), 91190 Jerusalem (Old City)

Carte ordination 2- 2017 back

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.

Actualités

 « ND d’Afrique à Rome chez les SMNDA » c’est le 22 avril que les Sœurs Blanches d’Afrique ont célébré la fête de Notre Dame d’Afrique à leur maison générale (lire la suite)

« François : prier pour les vocations » un texte du pape qui date du mois de novembre 2016, mais qui s’applique à la date du 7 mai 2017, journée mondiale de prière pour les vocations (lire la suite)

« A quand le jugement de Blaise Compaoré ? » Blaise Comparoé, resté 27 ans au pouvoir, est cité à comparaître, non pas en tant que Président, mais en tant que ministre de la Défense. (lire la suite)

 Témoignages
« Au nom de la religion ? » (barbarie ou fraternité) recension d’un livre du jésuite François Euvé paru aux éditions de l’Atelier en 2016 (la slire uite)

« Long week-end à Erbil » André Querton était récemment dans le Kurdistan irakien. Après avoir traversé d’anciennes zones de combat, il a visité de nombreux camps de réfugiés. (lire la suite)

« Le patriarche Bartholomée 1er »  À l’invitation du cheikh Ahmed Al Tayeb, le patriarche œcuménique Bartholomée Ier a prononcé une conférence intitulée « Les religions et la paix » (lire la suite)

 Dialogue interreligieux

 « 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

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