Mafrwestafrica lettre du 19 octobre 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

« Au Burkina, Bassolé sorti de prison » le général Djibrill Bassolé, assigné à résidence, reçoit les premières visites depuis sa sortie de prison. La nouvelle résidence de l’ex-patron de la diplomatie burkinabè est sous haute sécurité (lire la suite).

« Mali, lutter contre le terrorisme » Trois jours de discussion au Mali pour essayer de mutualiser la lutte contre le terrorisme et la criminalité transfrontalière (lire la suite).

« CEDEAO lutter contre le terrorisme » le centre sous-régional d’alerte précoce a été inauguré samedi 14 octobre à Bamako par les chefs d’Etat du Mali et du Togo (lire la suite).

« Attentat en Somalie » les dernières nouvelles au sujet de cet attentat innommable qui a fait au moins 300 morts et 300 blessés (lire la suite).

Témoignages 

« Un immigré écrit à un missionnaire » un texte traduit de l’italien qui exprime de qu’attendent des missionnaires les personnes vivant difficilement leur état d’immigrés. (lire la suite).

« De Mgr Claude Rault à Mgr John Mac William »  dans Voix d’Afrique cet article qui nous parle de L’ancien évêque de Ghardaïa et de son successeur (lire la suite).

« Une cinéaste burkinabè » Eléonore Yameogo tient à rencontrer les confrères dans les maisons de retraite pour les écouter exprimer leur vécu en Afrique (lire la suite).

« Un prêtre de Kaya (Burkina) nommé en France » L’abbé Eloi Bamogo est maintenant en France depuis la fin du mois d’août et a envoyé quelques nouvelles (lire la suite).

Histoire

« Qui a tué Sankara il y a 30 ans ? » sur le site de Jeune Afrique beaucoup d’éléments en lien avec cet assassinat. Naviguer sur le site… (lire la suite).

«  Sankara sur le site RFI » une présentation à la fois semblable et différente de ce qui est proposé sur le site de Jeune Afrique. Intéressant. D’autres éléments à venir sous peu (lire la suite).

Dialogue interreligieux

« Une femme insoumise » un roman qui présente deux mondes et surtout deux cultures, qui séparent les Belgo-marocains et les Belges de souche (lire la suite).

« Le pardon dans l’islam et la foi chrétienne » des citations et des liens internet pour mieux découvrir ce qu’est le pardon pour un musulman ou un chrétien (lire la suite).

« Synode chaldéen et pape François » l’accueil que le pape a réservé au synode de l’Eglise chaldéenne en encourageant ces chrétiens à ne pas se décourager malgré les difficultés dues à la guerre (lire la suite).

Justice et Paix

« Relations Europe-Afrique » Les relations entre l’U.E. et l’Afrique subsaharienne sont actuellement régies par l’accord de Cotonou, qui jette les bases des relations entre l’Union et les 78 pays appartenant au groupe ACP  (lire la suite).

« Macron et la migration ? » La France s’est engagée lundi 9 octobre à offrir 3 000 places aux réfugiés du Niger et du Tchad. Quelles seront les conditions et les conséquences ? (lire la suite).

« Migrants en Espagne » le témoignage d’un confrère missionnaire d’Afrique espagnol engagé dans l’accueil des migrants au sud du pays (lire la suite).

« ATD Quart Monde en Afrique » il y a 60 ans que cette association a été fondée, et le 17 octobre 2017, est aussi le 30e anniversaire de la Journée mondiale du refus de la misère que l’association a instaurée (lire la suite).

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Coup d’état 2015 au Burkina »  le site Mediapart revient sur cet événement, le putsh manqué de septembre 2015, et sur le rôle qu’aurait joué la Côte d’Ivoire (lire la suite).

« Toujours contestation au Togo » Après une semaine d’accalmie, l’opposition annonce de nouvelles manifestations les mercredi 18 et jeudi 19 octobre (lire la suite).

« Titre de séjour en Côte d’Ivoire » La feuille de papier vert plastifiée d’une durée de 12 mois va laisser place à un document biométrique format carte de paiement effectif pendant cinq ans. (lire la suite).

« Accident d’avion en Côte d’Ivoire » cet avion affrété par Barkhane, s’est écrasé sur la plage de Port-Bouët, à Abidjan, le 14 octobre 2017 (lire la suite).

« Ouattara et Soro en Côte d’Ivoire » ces deux personnages sont-ils sur la route de la réconciliation et du travail en commun ? (lire la suite).

« Procès Boko Haram au Nigéria » les premières condamnations sont tombées vendredi 13 octobre dans le procès de masse concernant près de 1 670 membres présumés de Boko Haram (lire la suite).

Message of Fr Gilbert Rukondo, M.Afr, from Nigeria.


Father Rukundo sent a message from Nigeria sharing with us his missionary life. Here below a short presentation of himself (in English) and his story (in French).

02 Gilbert 2I was born in Rwanda in 1982. After my secondary school, I started my studies in philosophy in the Democratic Republic of Congo at ‘La Ruzizi’ formation Centre from 2004 to 2007. Then, in 2007-2008, I did my spiritual year at Kasama situated in the Northern Part of Zambia. From there, I went to Malawi where I spent two years between 2008 and 2010 for my pastoral experience. I learnt Chichewa at Mua when Serge St-Arneault was in charge of our language course. I still have the certificate he awarded us at the end of our language course.

Serge Gilbert Salima LakeInterestingly, Stephen Kajendran, Didus Baguma and myself, we arrived at Mua the day before the Kungoni cultural day. It was very colourful only that I could not understand what was happening. At Mua, we were in the community with Serge, Julio Feliu and Claude Boucher. After it, I joined the community of Chezi on the top of the mountain between the capital Lilongwe and Lake Malawi. It was in November 2010. I stayed with André Bilodeau, Jean Arnaud and Michel Sanou who left soon after my arrival for his studies. Then Serge St-Arneault joined us sometimes in May of the same year.

Sisters of Mary MediatrixChezi was a beautiful place to be. Moving around to various churches was challenging but I liked it and I felt that people loved me. I had a nice community that trusted and supported me. I also appreciated visiting the orphanage under the care of the Sisters of Mary Mediatrix. I enjoyed as well the organisation of Malawi as a Sector, the moments of meetings and celebrations of various events.

I remember the day I renewed my declaration of intent! It was a great day for me, many confreres came from Lilongwe to grace it and Martin Onyango called it a “mini-ordination”. By the way, the binocular you gave me is still functional. I have it still. Life in Malawi was great. Thank you for those years we shared. Zikomo kwambiri!

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Dans les eaux profondes : une église à construire.

Par le père Gilbert Rukundo, M.Afr

J’ai été nommé à la Paroisse de Saint-Vincent de Paul à Ogo-Oluwa dans le diocèse d’Osogbo lorsque je suis arrivée au Nigeria en octobre 2013. J’y ai vécu une expérience épanouissante pendant trois ans. Je m’y sentais très à l’aise avec tout le monde. Ensuite, j’ai été nommé à Saint-Augustin à Oojo dans l’archidiocèse d’Ibadan qui était une succursale de la grande paroisse de l’Apôtre St-Thomas à Agbowo avant de devenir une paroisse autonome.

En accord avec l’Archevêque et le conseil provincial des Missionnaires d’Afrique, nous avons unanimement accepté de prendre en charge ce projet même s’il devenait inévitable que l’un de nous quitte son poste. Le choix est tombé sur moi et je l’ai acceptée d’un bon cœur. À vrai dire, j’étais l’un de protagonistes pour que Saint-Augustin devienne une paroisse.

En conséquence, je devrais me séparer de la communauté chrétienne d’Ogo-Oluwa qui a été témoin de mes premiers pas missionnaires juste après mon ordination sacerdotale le 17 août 2013. Ce fut une séparation douloureuse. Comme un adage dit : partir c’est mourir un peu.

La communauté chrétienne d’Ogo-Oluwa a organisé une fête d’adieu en soulignant quelques faits marquants de mon séjour. Étaient présents l’Évêque Mgr John Akinkunmi Oyejola les prêtres et religieux de notre doyenné, les staffs de l’hôpital Our Lady of Fatima où j’étais aumônier et les chrétiens de St-Vincent de Paul. Ils resteront toujours gravés dans ma mémoire.

Par contre, la communauté chrétienne de Saint-Augustin est à construire. L’église et les bureaux sont encore en chantier tout comme le presbytère. Milieu dynamique, Saint-Augustin englobe plusieurs tribus venant de partout au Nigeria. La population est composée de quelques pensionnaires militaires et des jeunes venus d’un peu partout à la recherche d’une meilleure vie et qui font des petits commerces au marché d’Ojoo qui n’est pas loin de l’église.

Mgr. Gabriel Adeleke Abegunrin 2À l’exemple de Saint-Augustin élevée au statut de quasi-Parish en février 2015, une autre succursale nommée St-Martin-de-Porres prend racine, située à cinq kilomètres seulement de Saint-Augustin. La fondation de l’église a été bénie par l’archevêque d’Ibadan Mgr. Gabriel Adeleke Abegunrin le 21 mai 2017. Les fidèles prennent à cœur le défi de bâtir les bâtiments dans l’entraide.

Les nouveaux registres des chrétiens demandent beaucoup de travail. Pour le moment, je garde la plupart des dossiers paroissiaux dans ma chambre en attendant la construction d’un bureau temporaire qui est une priorité, dès que le toit sera mis sur l’église.

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Nous célébrons la messe quatre fois par semaine. Le dimanche, même inachevée, l’église est n’a pas assez d’espace pour tout le monde. Confiant que tout se passera bien, la joie et l’enthousiasme des communautés très généreuses qui célèbrent son Seigneur sont au rendez-vous. Je considère ma mission actuelle comme une plongée dans les eaux profondes. Conscient que ce n’est pas ma mission, mais une participation dans la mission du Christ, je trouve ma consolation dans le service que j’offre comme Missionnaire d’Afrique.

Big celebration in Mua, Malawi.


15 BBy Landry Busagara, stagiaire in Mua.

Saturday on the 23rd September, Mua Parish was celebrating its 115 years of existence. Mua mission was established by three Missionaries of Africa in September 1902 and has since grown to have 25 churches and about 25 000 Christians. Moreover, it was the golden jubilee of priesthood of Father Claude Boucher who has been living in Mua for more than 40 years. The parish was also celebrating 25 years of service of one of its catechists: Abambo Simoni Panyani.

Many people came from different places to congratulate and share our joy. We were honoured by the presence of the Vice President of the Republic of Malawi, the Ambassador of Germany in Malawi, the Provincial of Southern Africa, the MPs, Chiefs, Priests, Sisters, brothers and parishioners who came in large numbers for the event.

The Eucharist was presided by the Bishop of Dedza Diocese, Bishop Emmanuele Kanyama. Time was given to present the amazing journey of Father Boucher Chisale, the founder of the Kungoni Centre of Culture and Art. It was a celebration to remember all the missionaries who contributed to the life of the Christian community over so many years. “Following that example of the bounty of God, said the Bishop, we are called to do the same, we need to love one another, to forget our ego and live together as brothers and sisters without conflicts and quarrels, and to be thankful to God and to the missionaries.

21 ABeing in Malawi for so long, Father Boucher, as he said, became a Malawian and happy to be so. His regret is to see how people are becoming careless about the environment and the culture. As a matter of fact, Father Claude, now 75 years old, has been working and doing research in anthropology and the local culture all his life. He wrote many books and received many awards for his tremendous achievement. He asked the Lord to grant him some more days to continue working in his vineyard.

Father Felix Phiri, our Provincial, expressed his joy and congratulated everyone. In his view, it is rare to see Missionaries of Africa celebrating 115 years of presence in the same parish. Usually, they start a parish and, after some time, move elsewhere. Father Claude Boucher should be a good example for all missionaries for his closeness to the people and his care for the nature and preserving the local culture.

The Vice President Saulos Chilima was also very happy to be present and thankful for the invitation. “We should not forget our beautiful culture in exchange with foreign ones. We were not supposed to wait for missionaries to teach us how to preserve our culture and traditions. We need to keep our identity. Nowadays, he continued, people are more aggressive towards the environment. We are more zealous in destroying than in building. The way we cut trees, the way we use water… and we do not realise that what we are doing will cause us problems in the future.” He also talked about demography in Malawi. If we do not pay attention on how we make children, it will be very hard in the years to come. We should give birth to children that we are capable of raising up.

Before the final blessing, the Bishop congratulated Father Claude Boucher who has sacrificed his whole life for others, caring for the nature, the culture, being one of the people. He asked us to take into consideration that good example.

Link: Mua Parish Celebration in Dedza diocese, Malawi.

Our confrère Jean-Luc André Gouiller, M.Afr, leaving Zambia for France, his home country, on 4th October 2017


« Ce n’est qu’un au revoir, mon frère,

Ce n’est qu’un au revoir!

Oui, nous nous reverrons, mon frère, ce n’est qu’un au revoir!’ »

Jean-Luc_Gouiller

By Venerato Deus Babaine, M.Afr, Provincial Delegate – Zambia, October 03, 2017

Farewell to you!

The Biblical Ecclesiastes, was right when he said that there is time for everything, time for coming and time for going.

We appreciate the good service you rendered to our missionary family in Zambia, the Catholic Church in AMECEA Region and France. You arrived in Zambia in 1966, as a vibrant young man born at Colligny-Ain. You have spent most of your life in Zambia as a vibrant, committed missionary passionate about the Zambian people, un missionnaire sans frontières, vraiment!

You put all your talents, experience and gifts at the service of your confreres and the people of God. Your simplicity and down-to-earth approach will be remembered. The people you have served, will always remember you, Abambo Gouiller. As you return to your homeland your heart must be pregnant with so many memoirs of the people you met in Zambia, in Kenya and other countries you went to during your active missionary life. These are the stories that will gladden your heart as you look back to the mission in Africa especially in Zambia.

We appreciate that you will have some time to be in your country France, to have a time with retired missionaries from other parts of Africa and a time with some members of your family; the children, grandchildren and great-grand-children of Lucien and Marie. Your father died when you were just six years in the mission and your mother died when you were twenty years in the mission. Their care and prayers for you have been a source of strength and faith for you to live a missionary life to the full.

Your missionary life in Zambia started in Kanyanga in 1966. You worked as a pastor, as a teacher, chaplain, leadership of our then region and supported special apostolates like the laity and CARYM. Your passion for justice and integrity of creation is special. Your last apostolate to put in order the land ownership of Chipata diocese has been tough, frustrating but the efforts you made will have lasting results and will be a great help to the diocese.

Your missionary life has been marked by a spirit of availability and new insights for the mission in Africa. You have been a community life man. You promoted and lived a simple-life style that has been a witness to many. You loved to see new Zambian vocations; you have seen them make oath and take positions of leadership in our missionary family. Some of us have been inspired by your devotion to prayer life.

We thank God who has guided you in your mission. We thank your family that has been supporting you in many ways. We thank you for you service and fraternity to us!

Keep us in prayer, pray for the missions and church in Zambia. Mwende makora abambo Gouiller!

Messages from Confreres:

From Michel Meunier, M.Afr.

Dear Jean-Luc, Thank you for all what you have done and all that you have been for Zambia in particular and for Africa in general, especially during your years spent in Gaba Pastoral Institute. You have been a model and an inspiration for many. United in the same Mission.

From Christophe Boyer, M.Afr, du Caire:

Jean-Luc, Je te souhaite un bon retour en France. Merci pour ton service conciliant foi et engagements socio-politique. Que ton expérience Zambienne soit une source de gratitude et de joie offerte à tes relations.

From Filiyanus Ekka, M.Afr

Dear Fr. Jean-Luc Gouiller, Many greetings from Filiyanus Ekka in India. I thank you very much for your dedicated service to the people of God in Africa -ZAMBIA. Your Missionary zeal was lesson for me and it is still motivating me in my priestly life. You took care of Vinod very well and in heaven he is remembering you. May God Bless you.

From Réal Doucet M.Afr

Mon cher Jean-Luc, Nous ne nous connaissons pas beaucoup pour avoir travaillé dans différents lieux de mission, mais cela ne m’empêche pas de rendre grâce à Dieu pour ta qualité de présence en Zambie durant tant d’années. Si aujourd’hui il y a des jeunes Zambiens dans la maison de formation où je suis présentement, c’est grâce à des hommes comme toi qui ont su montré par leur engagement et dévouement auprès des gens que la vocation missionnaire était une bénédiction non seulement pour les gens mais aussi pour eux-mêmes. Continue dans ton ministère missionnaire à prier pour ceux qui prennent notre place lorsque le temps est venu de tourner une belle page de notre histoire de vie. Que Dieu fasse fructifier toutes tes années vécues en Afrique et pour l’Afrique. Beni soit-il !

New academic year 2017-2018 opening Mass in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.


New academic year Abidjan 2017 01 copieBy Goodwell Levison.

The opening Mass of the new academic year in Abidjan took place on Friday September 15, 2017.  The first purpose of the event was to welcome the new members of the formation house called the Lavigerie Centre. Paul Pipe started his first year while Joseph Goodwell Levison made his declaration of intention as a second-year student. Both of them are Malawians from the Southern Africa Province (SAP). A third-year student is also from SAP; Brian Banda from Zambia. The new rector, Fr. François Xavier Bigeziki was also presented to the community at Mass.

It is a custom in Western part of Africa to welcome visitors with a cup of water. This local ritual was performed to welcome the new rector and students once they have knocked at the door outside the campus. Then, the visitors were being asked to express their intention of coming. Few pictures below are showing this cultural behaviour. The new academic year starts on Monday 18th September. We wish them all a fruitful year.

On behalf of my fellow brothers here in Abidjan and my own behalf, we appreciate and recognize always the members from SAP and those working in SAP for your unceasing moral, financial and spiritual support.

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Golden Jubilee of priesthood of Fr Piet van Heijst, M.Afr.


Fr Piet van Heijst 03Fr Piet van Heijst celebrated his Golden Jubilee as a priest at St John the Baptist Catholic Church New-Kaloko in Ndola on August 27. The celebration took place in a joyful atmosphere led by the Parish-Priest Fr Francis Scszurek assisted by Fr Didasio Mwanza and the entire church council. A number of delegations came from various parishes and institutions as well as Dominicans and Child Jesus Sisters. The Vicar General, Fr Paul Simukanzi represented Bishop Justin Mulenga of Mpika. Fr van Heijst has been working in his diocese for the past 40 years.

Friends came from Chilonga, Mpika, Serenje and from Twatasha and Kawama in Kitwe. In his preaching, Fr Camille Konkobo highlighted the joy felt by the Jubilerian, a priest dedicated to the people and the sick who loves the Zambian. Christian families and small Christian Communities were encouraged to promote vocations in the Church.

Recently, Fr van Heijst has been the chaplain of Ndola General Hospital while helping the Parish-Priest.

He is a dedicated and hardworking Missionary of Africa. In the thanksgiving Mass, 50 candles were lit as a symbol of faith in all the places where Fr van Heijst worked. It was very touchy and emotional, a great moment of prayer. After Mass, a group of women made a sketch depicting the call to priesthood.

We wish you many more years in your ministry and may you continue being a model, a pastor, an image of Christ to the people you are sent to. Happy ministry and keep your beautiful smiling face always!

Camille Konkobo, M.Afr, Vocation Director for Zambia based at Kolibo Vocation Centre, Serenje, Zambia.

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Ordination of Frederick Chungu Mulenga, M.Afr


Frederic Chungu Ordi2By Felix Kamunenge, M.Afr

The ordination of Rev Fr. Frederick Chungu Mulenga by his Lordship Rt. Rev Patrick C. Chisanga, OFM. Conv. took place at St Peter’s Catholic Church, Nchelenge – Mansa Diocese, on 19th August 2017 which is a new parish created from St Paul’s – Kashikishi which had been one of the oldest parishes of the M.Afr in the 1980s.

As early as 08:30 am on Saturday morning, scores of diocesan priests from the neighbouring parishes and Missionaries of Africa from afar were getting ready to be witnesses of Frederick’s ordination day.

The ordination proper was punctuated by the solemn profession of faith in St Paul’s Parish in which the ordained publicly, in front of the Bishop, the Provincial Superior and a few priests and lay people, read and signed the creed as a sign of being faithful to the deposits of Catholic faith. The whole ceremony took about 30 minutes.

As soon as this exercise was concluded, there followed an ordination motorcade with a convoy of 20 cars following each to the ordination square in St Peter’s. It is a distance of 3.5kms from the presbytery. Two policemen on a twin police motorbike led the motorcade in front. The whole procession was so well organised that no car was allowed to overtake the other.

The ordination Mass kicked off at 10:00 am with the procession accompanied by the Stella (child dancers aged 5-10), ba Buomba (adult traditional dancers) and all the priests. Frederick was accompanied to the altar by his parents, who later presented him to the bishop and the M.Afr Superior.

The liturgy was lively and inculturated. The singing by the choir and by Buomba at different intervals was well coordinated. The ordination Mass was attended by hundreds of people from all walks of life. About 35 priests out of which 13 M.Afr attended the function and a handful of religious Sisters. Here we can say that our Chungu was fully supported.

The homily was short and straight to the point. In his homily, the bishop made it a point to praise the past missionaries of this land and urged the Christians to safeguard the faith deposits planted in the hearts of people. He urged the ordained to be an ambassador of the Church in Nchelenge by being a good example wherever he would be sent. He was tagged as the 125 Jubilee baby of Nchelenge being one of the fruits of M.Afr evangelisation. Citing Jer. 1:4-10, he was encouraged not to be afraid to speak the truth as the cross is part of our Christian identity. He further talked about certain traditional practices like seeking witch doctors as hindrances to real evangelisation.

After the ceremony, all M.Afr gathered in front of the altar to sing the Sancta Maria while the newly ordained priest was kneeling down.

Mafrwestafrica lettre du 1er septembre 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

« Contre la dynastie Gnassingbe au Togo » des manifestations du Parti National populaire (PNP) contre cette famille, au pouvoir depuis 50 ans (lire la suite)

« Attentats de Catalogne » : l’enquête a mis au jour une filière terroriste marocaine d’une douzaine de personnes. Parmi elles, quatre fratries originaires du royaume chérifien (lire la suite)
« Le site M.Afr pour la France » quelques informations au sujet de ce site et de sa nouvelle adresse sur internet (lire la suite)

Témoignages 

« Ce qu’ont vécu les lycéennes nigérianes » les journaux intimes clandestins tenus par plusieurs des jeunes filles enlevées par le jihadistes de Boko Haram a été rendu public par l’agence de presse Reuters (lire la suite)

« Biographie du père Joseph Olivaud » ce missionnaire qui se trouvait dans notre maison de Billère, est décédé le 9 juin dernier. Son parcours est raconté par le père Jaquinod (lire la suite)

« Problèmes au Congo Brazzaville(Pool) » Pas moins de 2 000 personnes sont venues assister à la manifestation de l’association des jeunes-mères du Congo (AJMC) le 28 août (lire la suite)

Dialogue interreligieux

« Recherche sur la radicalisation violente » quels sont les phénomènes de radicalisation cognitive et comportementale qui touchent des acteurs islamistes partisans du djihadisme armé (lire la suite)

« Observatoire pour les minorités » Mgr Gallagher a participé à l’inauguration d’un Observatoire pour les minorités religieuses dans le monde (lire la suite)

« Religion et violence » des informations intéressantes fournies par l’Observatoire des Religions et de la Laïcité (lire la suite)

Justice et Paix

« Ras Bath au Mali » Ras Bath, qui est aussi membre du Collectif pour la défense de la République (CDR), est une des voix les plus audibles de la plateforme « Antè A bana » contre le projet de révision constitutionnelle au Mali (lire la suite)

« Journée mondiale migrants et réfugiés » le message du pape François pour la 104ème journée des migrants et réfugiés qui se tiendra le 14 janvier 2018 (lire la suite)

« Prier pour la sauvegarde de la création » la 3e édition de la Journée Mondiale de Prière pour la Sauvegarde de la Création qui se déroule le 1er septembre (lire la suite)

Vu au Sud – Vu du Sud

« Armes françaises en Afrique »  De 2012 à 2016, l’Afrique aura acheté des armes à la France pour un montant de 3,939 milliards d’euros. Le continent est même en constante augmentation (lire la suite)

« Situation en Sierra Leone » La catastrophe a fait au moins 499 morts et des centaines de disparus. Les populations sont traumatisées, les secouristes tentent toujours de retrouver les corps des disparus (lire la suite)

« Faux médicaments en Afrique » Interpol a annoncé vendredi la saisie de plus de 420 tonnes de produits médicaux de contrebande en Afrique de l’Ouest (lire la suite)

« Togo : manifestations en faveur du pouvoir » Une marche organisée en réponse aux manifestations de l’opposition du 19 août qui ont coûté la vie à deux personnes (lire la suite)

Death of Father Andreas Edele, M.Afr


Andreas Edele PNGFather Andreas Edele comes from Stetten in Hohenzollern. There he was born on 24 January 1934. After the Second World War he came to the mission school in Haigerloch and graduated from high school in Grosskrotzenburg. This was followed by the Philosophy Studies at the White Fathers in Trier. He was then appointed Novitiate to Alexandria Bay in the USA and then went to the theological studies of the African Missionaries in Eastview, Canada. In Ottawa, he was ordained a priest on September 19, He was appointed to the mission to Malawi, where he was first employed in parish work after a language course, and from 1961 worked for two years as secretary for education. From 1964 he was a lecturer in theology and until 1967 was a professor at the University of the White Fathers in Trier. After his home mission, his journey back to Africa, this time to Lusaka in Zambia, where he was again active in pastoral care. In 1982 he returned to Germany and worked for Missio in Aachen. He then went back to the mission to Malawi, where he worked in Kanengo and Mua in pastoral care. At the beginning of the nineties, his eyes forced him to undergo surgery, and in the following years he came back to eye control again and again. In 1993 he was finally appointed home, was a few years in Trier, and from 2003 to 2008 he took over the management of the mission house in Haigerloch. During the years in Germany, he has never forgotten Africa, but from his own location, has done his best for the people of Africa. On July 22, Father Edele died after a long illness at the hospital in Balingen.

Pater Andreas Edele verstorben

Pater Andreas Edele stammt aus Stetten in Hohenzollern. Dort war er am 24. Januar 1934 geboren worden. Nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg kam er auf die Missionsschule in Haigerloch und machte in Großkrotzenburg das Abitur. Es folgte das Philosophiestudium bei den Weissen Vätern in Trier. Danach wurde er zum Noviziat nach Alexandria Bay in den USA ernannt und ging anschießend zum Theologiestudium ins Scholastikat der Afrikamissionare nach Eastview, Kanada. In Ottawa wurde er am 19. September 1959 zum Priester geweiht. Er erhielt eine Ernennung in die Mission nach Malawi, wo er nach einem Sprachkurs zunächst in der Pfarrarbeit eingesetzt war und ab 1961 für zwei Jahre als Sekretär für Erziehungswesen tätig war. Ab 1964 machte er das Lizentiat in Theologie und war bis 1967 als Professor an der Hochschule der Weissen Väter in Trier eingesetzt. Nach diesem Heimateinsatz führte sein Weg zurück nach Afrika, diesmal nach Lusaka in Sambia, wo er wieder in der Seelsorge tätig war. 1982 kam er zurück nach Deutschland und arbeitete bei Missio in Aachen im Bildungsbereich. Anschließend ging er in die Mission nach Malawi zurück, wo er in Kanengo und Mua in der Seelsorge wirkte. Anfang der 90er Jahre zwangen ihn Probleme mit seinen Augen zu einer Operation und in den folgenden Jahren kam er immer wieder zur Augenkontrolle nach Deutschland zurück. 1993 wurde er endgültig in die Heimat ernannt, war einige Jahre Superior in Trier und von 2003 bis 2008 übernahm er die Leitung des Missionshauses in Haigerloch. In den Jahren in Deutschland hat er Afrika nie vergessen, sondern von seinem jeweiligen Standort aus, sein Möglichstes für die Menschen in Afrika getan. Am 22. Juli ist Pater Edele nach längerer Krankheit im Krankenhaus in Balingen verstorben.

http://www.afrikamissionare.de/de/verstorbene_2017.html

My Personal Odyssey from Head to Heart.


John-Paul Ngabirano copieBy John-Paul Ngabirano

My heartfelt gratitude goes to God, my formators and fellow novices who accompanied me up to the end from the beginning of the spiritual year. It has been a nice experience with which I feel fulfilled. We started eighteen novices and ended seventeen. There are many factors that inspired us to be committed up to the end. That was observance of our community project that comprised five objectives: to know the will of God in my life, to deepen my relationship with Jesus, to live in a fraternal and intercultural community, to deepen the knowledge and charism of the Society of the Missionaries of Africa and to know who I am.

Community life was not so much spoken of but lived. The concern of the other fetched a kind of bond with cords that cannot be broken. Also, prayer and Jesus were at the centre of our stay, for we had much time of reflection, prayer, meditation, silence and retreats which helped us deepen our relationship with Jesus. In fact, at the end of the spiritual year there is one common word that comes so often on the tongue of each novice. And that is, “Jesus Christ” from whom priestly vocation precedes. We indeed grew and we continuously grow in knowledge and grace of Jesus Christ to him be glory in present and in eternity.

Kasama July 2017 02We had many occasions that brought a sense of joy and belonging. In order for us to belong, we took the clothing ceremony seriously “Gandoura day” which is our identity in the Society of the Missionaries of Africa. The knowledge of the society was deepened in looking forward to listening to wisdom of old and keeping the dreams and visions of the young. To have a proper foundation of all that is good in life there is one aspect that brings more sense to my life. A sense of being loved by God. Indeed, God cannot hate His own hand. The Ignatian spirituality led us to be committed, have inner freedom to all created things and to come to the realisation that we are loved sinners who need God’s mercy. And that is what we will share in our apostolic training as we go for our apostolic training, also called ‘stage’, of two years.

Be still and know that I am with you!

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The Positivity of Humility.


Brother Patrick Nora, M.Afr, from Ghana but based in Tanzania gave us a spiritual and illuminating retreat in Kasama from May 8 till 16, 2017.

On the third day, there was something that retouched me on the theme of the Mercy of God.

patrick_mumbiBy Patrick Mumbi, M.Afr

Initially I wanted to have as title; ‘forgiveness and humility’. I had the sense that you cannot forgive without humility because the two go together and especially when forgiving someone who is not contrite for what he or she did to you. Those who killed Jesus or St. Stephen were not remorseful as they thought that they were doing a just act. Even terrorists might think so. But Christians must make a difference by not retaliating. They should instead pray even for those who persecute them (Mt 5:44). Our Master Lord Jesus Christ said; ‘if only you reserve your greeting to those you know what difference are you making, even pagans do the same, do they not (Mt 5: 47)’?

alan-kurdiOn the theme of forgiveness, others think otherwise, namely, one can forgive even without humility because forgiveness is a human thing and especially when one sees the other suffering. The human conscious cannot allow one to see the other in a situation of suffering no matter how coarse his or her heart is. The case in point is that of the closure of the borders to immigrants due to terrorism. When a baby boy called Alan Kurdi slipped from its mother’s hands in 2015 and was washed away by the current and landed on a Turkish beach, it sent shock waves and borders were opened for the immigrants. I agree to the fact that forgiveness is part of human nature. God has implanted it into every human heart. When we talk of sisterhood, brotherhood, freedom and indeed all the fruits of our nature and enterprise, they are all present to human nature in a mystery. For us, they are revealed in the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ and will be brought into full flower when the Lord returns (class notes on Grace). But there is more to why forgiveness hinges on humility. For me it is not only biblical/spiritual but also productive and positive.

The Christian aspect of forgiveness.

My spiritual director once asked me that when someone has insulted you or told you that you are a fool or stupid, who has to apologise? Off the cuff, my answer was: “the one who had insulted me”. To my surprise, he said no! You are the one who has to go and ask for forgiveness or reconciliation. You need to go in humility and ask him or her where you went wrong. This is being Christian. You need to go and ask to your brother or sister and say: my brother/sister, forgive me, I saw you angry with me. This will change your brother or sister’s heart who wronged you or insulted you. This is biblical as scripture says;

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.” (Mt 5:24).

“Do not repay anyone evil for evil (Rm 12:17). Carefully, consider what is right in the eyes of everybody.”

“If it is possible on your part, live at peace with everyone.” (Rm 12:18).

This is the crux of the matter and why forgiveness calls for humility. It is Christian in the sense that it is not him who wronged you who should ask for forgiveness but it is you who was wronged, who needs reconciliation or to make peace.  We instead wait for the other person who has wronged us to come and apologise. If he or she does not come to me, I will never talk to that person. This can happen to priests, Church elders, leaders of lay groups such that they have never talked to each for ages because something happened between them. Such kinds of hatred have even brought divisions in the Church but people pretend not to bother.

But by taking the first step in humility (and as a Christian) you emulate God who took the first initiative to come and save humanity at the time when we had sinned. St. Paul writes: “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. It is rare indeed for anyone to die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die” (Rm 5: 7). We did not go to him but he came to us.

However there are stumbling blocks to this, taking into account our human insecurities, pride and fear. There are fears that others will manipulate me or think that I am too cheap. Additionally, fear in the sense that other people look for the mistakes or weaknesses in other people so as to blow them up. The attitude of blowing up mistakes of others is a sign of insecurity. Likewise the fear of revealing one’s weaknesses is a sign of insecurity. There are insecurities on both sides. Insecurity also in the sense that others may take it as my weakness when I have already built up my self-esteem and I cannot bring myself so low.  But I have also a sense that humility is a feeling of courage when others are pigeonholing you without shaking. Humility is daring to listen to feelings, comments, shameful and awful aspects of oneself which probably I have denied and repressed from my life. This attitude I believe can move me to the level of self-acceptance and wholeness. I would like now talk about the positivity or productivity of humility.

Positivity of humility.

In communities, we live with people whom we do not like and those who do not like us. But how do you feel especially when you are not talking to each other and you have to face each other every so often? The world becomes small having to avoid them all the time. But when you forgive and reconcile you feel free and healed. Someone told me that forgiveness is like swallowing a bitter pill but it heals you. A grudge, on the other hand, sickens and kills you psychologically in the sense that you need a lot of negative energy or emotions to keep it going. You cannot go for a long time before it suffocates you. But if you let go with a lot of pain- if you go to that pain of letting go rather than avoid it, the Kingdom of God comes.

Humility helps to reach out to others strongly. The letter to the Philippians is a prime example of the positivity and productivity of humility of our Lord Jesus Christ (Phil 2:5-11). It says; “though he was God he did not cling to his divine nature but assumed the nature of a slave and through that he reached out to many people.” You know your rights and your importance but as a Christian, you forgive because you want reconciliation and reach out to other(s). It is much easier to talk and write about humility but quite hard to practise it in one’s life. Other people have responded to me by asking and challenging me saying; “what about the humility and forgiveness of you, Patrick”? In other words, I should not only write or talk about humility and forgiveness but I should put it into my life. Let me also talk about what humility is not.

Humility as different from low self-concept.

Humility actually builds up and elevates the self-image. Spiritual masters always tell us that the one who says I am sorry for my wrong doing, builds up self-esteem instead of being proud or putting up a wrong/false façade. Humility does not involve thinking less about yourself or having a negative view of yourself. When you forgive, it does not mean that others are much better than you. When you forgive you also respect the person you have forgiven. Humility involves letting go wholeheartedly and that is freeing. It is also composed of sacrifice, self-denial, fasting and going an extra mile or giving more than what was asked of.

Let me also quote another Bemba proverb about humility. It says that; “tobela tobela akafye inganda.”  The literal translation is that; “endless arguments leave people nowhere.” There needs to be at least one who gives up his or her position or each one of you moves half way so as to bring up peace.  Sticking to one’s position without any movement will not solve any problem. It requires one to relinquish his or her position. For example, one can say; “I am the president” and another says, “I do not recognise your presidency”. If the two sides perpetually stick to their positions, nothing will materialise in terms of peace or reconciliation. Whereas humility is attractive, arrogance is repulsive. You cannot feign humility just as a drunkard cannot feign sobriety.

Therefore, humility does not mean that you look down on yourself. But humility is different from low self-concept, esteem or low locus of evaluation. Forgiveness is not completely due to the realisation of human contingencies or that I am a sinner therefore I need to forgive; this is self-pity. Realisation of one’s contingency or sinfulness could be a step towards forgiveness. Jesus was not a sinner but he forgave those who killed him.

Do not intimidate the offender.

Is it not right to say that preventing humiliating the offender breaks the circle of violence? In being offended we carry with us a lot of anger in our chest believing that the offender must be punished, crushed and feel the pinch of his or her offence. But what actually are we doing to them? Haven’t we created a psychological warfare or created a spirit of vindictiveness in them which will never end? It is part of human nature that even if people have sinned or offended they should not be intimidated but need respect and experience softness in order to foster the attitude of change. Besides there are some people who may not be ready even to relinquish their pride. They would prefer to die with their pride other than swallowing it while others may be shy or find it humiliating by being forgiven.

Les misérablesYou remember in that film “Les misérables” how the pursuant asked his enemy why he did not kill him but forgave him. In other words, he was telling him: “who told you to forgive me”. Sometimes, I am led to think that it is the poor and the humble who appreciate forgiveness. In this world where people have acquired a variety of statuses in forms of richness, education, political mileage, etc. humility to accept forgiveness will be hard to come by. It is up to the victim or the offended to be humble to forgive.

Humility in valuing others or seeing goodness in others.

There was a woman who came to me and said she lent a lot of money to her friend and for many years she asked for that money but to no avail. Her friend always told her that she would give it back to her but she did not. In the end, she just gave up her pursuit of that money for the sake of friendship. There are similar examples of that nature such as giving up the debts, the land, and property helplessly. But is this forgiveness? Wouldn’t it be much better to tell the other one that I have forgiven you, so that the other does not look down when you meet face to face?

Scripture says that humility consists in valuing others above yourself. I quote: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition, or vain conceit but rather think of others as better than you.(Phil 2:3). St. John of the Cross said that rejoice in the goodness of others as if it were your own, desiring that they be given precedence over you in all things. In other words, try to see goodness in other people. This is very difficult especially when you are at loggerheads with them. It is even harder to see goodness in people who pride themselves.

I would like to quote a Bemba proverb or a tale which says something about humility. It says that friendship started by ‘help me look for my arrow’ = Icibusa catampile muli mfwailako umufwi. In the process of helping the other to look for his arrow, the two boys became friends. If it was not for loving humility, the other boy would have gone home and not have spent hours looking for the lost arrow.

Barak Obama PNGLet me also talk about another side of humility. Probably other people may find some truth or meaning in it. There is one thing I liked about Obama’s character. When people talked ill about him such as calling him a nigger and what, he just smiled and laughed. I found that healing instead of having to defend oneself and arguing. If you know who you are, why should you worry about negative remarks people make about you? (ukukuntikilwa = to worry about negative remarks.) We are very quick at defending ourselves whenever people say something negative about us. When I was doing the course of psychotherapy there was a day in a week which was strictly dedicated to each person. Fellow students would point at each and every defect they have known about the person and the person is supposed to keep quiet. Knowing one’s weakness in humility is also empowering. But some students would end up crying all day thinking that others do not like them.

There are some people in this world, when you meet them, you feel like a human being, empowered and magnanimous. This is not pretence or that they are putting up a façade but it is just the way they are. I also believe that we can heal people simply by the way we are. It is the phenomenon which the psychologists call ‘participation mystique’ = when what we are experiencing from inside is in resonance with what is happening from outside. You are truthful to other people in your relationship and forgiveness.

CarlRogersI like what Carl Rogers said which I think is related to healing and it comes from conscious forgiveness. Rogers said: “If only I can be real, if only I can be transparent, if only I can get in touch with my inner self so that the other can see through me that I am not holding anything back, then process of therapy can begin to take place” (Rogers, 1959). In this case forgiveness is coupled with honest and respect of someone, and honouring of that person (hyperecho to elevate/hold above in Greek). It is not pretence or demeaning of someone like; “I have forgiven you, little mosquito”. People are not fools, they can see through whether you have forgiven them or not. If you haven’t, they will always walk with a guilty conscious and will never look into your eyes.

In conclusion. 

We are born in different settings with different upbringing and humility may not be part of our life. Some people are lucky by being born with humility. But if we can train for transformation we can as well train or learn to be humble. We can start by appreciating others; delight in the success of others. All in all, in my view, forgiveness is positive and hinges on true humility.

THE POSITIVITY OF HUMILITY1

Souvenir of a very special meal.


pere-jacques-hamelBy Christophe Boyer, M.Afr

End of April 2017, I was back from holidays in France where the islamo-christian dialogue has improved a lot since the martyrdom of Father Jacques Hamel during mass in a church. Of their own initiative Muslims have come to Church to show their opposition to violence and intolerance.

Toni RowlandI was wondering what could be done here in South Africa. One day I received a phone call from Toni Rowland who is in charge of the family apostolate at the South African Catholic Bishops Conference. She asked me to advise her about a Muslim invitation since I am a contact person for islamo-christian relations at the SACBC. I was lifted up by this answer to my question.

We went together to meet Ayhan Cetin the CEO of the Turquoise Harmony Institute. He told us that this year the Institute invites people motivated to inter religious dialogue to share the breaking of the fast in a Muslim family. Toni had already gone with the Institute to visit Turkey. We said it is a very good project and emailed the invitation to Catholics who might be interested. Toni went to such an iftaar and was delighted meeting such a diversity of people. So I asked Michel Meunier of Canada and George Okwii of Uganda, my two fellow priests in Edenglen if they would be interested in such an invitation. They answered without hesitations.

Then I registered on the Facebook page of the Institute and received an answer within the week with the professional assistance of Ayhan and his secretary. The 12th June at 17:30, we arrived at Sermin and Turker Isler’s flat not far from Nizamiye mosque. We were immediately warmly welcomed by them and three neighbours. I gave in an envelope the message of the Vatican for the Feast of the Sacrifice at end of the Ramadan and a small box of mint green tea. We sat with our three male hosts. The food was tasty and rich. We closed the meal with black tea.

Nizamiye mosque 2The conversation was lively: our respective lives, work, politics, soccer… One and the other went for a prayer at the end of the meal. Finally, after thanking the mistress of the house we moved at the invitation of our three male counterparts to the beautiful pastry parlour of the mosque. On the way we could admire the illuminated mosque in the night.

We were happily surprised to meet Uncle Ali, the builder of the mosque and the boss of the pastry who sat at table with us. There was another round of very refined Turkish delights one of them being hot ice cream…  The conversation became more spiritual. We need such table fellowship to anticipate the one at the end of the world when there will be universal love without discrimination of religion, race, gender, wealth or culture. We promised to follow up with other similar encounters even with the youth and during worship. We parted with a precious new memory in our hearts.

Souvenir of a very special meal

Link: Visit of Nizamiye mosque on Tuesday 5th July 2016.

Death of FATHER LÉOPOLD LALONDE, M. Afr.


Léopold Lalonde_JPEG “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will still live, even if he dies. ” John 11, 25

 Friday, March 10, 2017

Father Gilles Barrette, Provincial of the Americas, informs you of the death of FATHER LÉOPOLD LALONDE, M. Afr. He died on March 10 2017, in Sherbrooke, at the age of 89 years of which 62 of missionary life in Zambia and Canada. Let us pray for the repose of his soul.

Missionnaires d’Afrique, 1640, rue St-Hubert, Montréal, H2L 3Z3  mafrsecr@mafr.net


  PLACE COUNTRY

1956-10-01

Arrival Mambwe

Zambia

1961-01-17

Teaching Abercorn  

1961-05-17

Curate

Mambwe

 

1962-12-05

Foundation Kantensha  
1963-07-01 Supérieur

Isoka

 

1969-01-18

Retreat Villa Cavalletti  

1978-03-03

Session-Retreat

Jerusalem

 
1978-10-01 Supérieur

Mambwe

 

1980-03-01

Regional Councillor    
1984-01-01 Curate

Isoka

 
1986-01-01 Parish Priest Isoka – Mbala

Zambia

1988-04-13

Home leave/Prov.>18.09.88    
1992-05-01 Home leave /Prov.>00.09.92    

1994-09-01

Sabbatical Italy/Canada   Canada
1994-10-31 Focolarini, Loppiano Incisa, Val d’Arno

Italia

1995-05-17

Home leave /Prov.>10.12.95    
1995-10-01 Ministry to the sick Kasama, St Joseph’s

Zambia

1998-05-13

Home leave /Prov.>14.08.98    
2001-07-21 Home leave /Prov.>08.11.01    

2004-05-27

Home leave /Prov.>06.09.04    
2010-11-01 Back to Canada  

Canada

2017-03-10

Death Sherbrooke

Canada

Léopold Lalonde medalSee the link: The President’s Insignia of Mercy attributed to Léopold Lalonde

Also: PDF file: The President’s Insignia of Mercy attributed to Léopold Lalonde