South Africa Sector Post Cap Deliberations – Formation House in Merrivale, KwaZulu/Natal


Spirituality-Charism-Community-Mission-Service

post-cap-feb-2017-01cThe South Africa Sector held its Post Capitular Assembly from Tuesday 14th February till Thursday 16th February. We thank especially Fr. Bill Turnbull, M.Afr., from the Malawi Sector for preparing our documents and for guiding us all through our Post Cap. Bill put a lot of effort into this event.  He focused primarily on our fundamentals and foundation as Missionaries of Africa: our Spirituality-Charism and Community living, then looked at our Mission, with all its complexities of pastoral insertion; placing ourselves at the service of Africa at the existential peripheries; encountering and dialoguing with others, especially other faiths and Islam; addressing issues of poverty, corruption, land, racism and migrants, justice & peace and ecology.  Even though we had three full days, it wasn’t enough to really address and process the issues affecting us in our mission here in South Africa. Despite our very diverse cultures, languages and ages etc., we could sense a real unity of purpose and direction in the spirit of the Chapter. We look forward to the final Provincial Strategic Plan to come from the upcoming Provincial Council to be held in a couple of weeks’ time. 

Father, Son & Holy Spirit Guide Us

At the opening on Tuesday morning, following the Chapter’s example, we held a small ceremony of the lighting of candles which remained lit for the duration of our Post Cap. The candles represented the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the Triune God, and we prayed this God guide us, and keep us united, through our sharing’s, discussions and deliberations. Bill composed three prayers which were read out as each of the three candles were lit. Each morning, as we opened our discussions, these candles were lit.

Ecological – ‘Paperless-Digital’ Gathering

One significant change of this Post Cap and the general Sector Meeting, which was held on the Monday before (13th Feb), was that we had a ‘paperless’, or ‘digital’ Post Cap. Basically, the only paper we used was the actual Chapter document itself. This was a first for our Sector and we will continue to be ecologically sensitive to how we run our meetings and gatherings. Everything was done on computer, using flash drives and projecting our documents onto a large screen. Feedback was done by a group spokesperson or secretary who typed up everything onto the group flash drive. This was then given to the moderator and to the Post Cap secretaries. We are happy that during this Post Cap we could begin to implement the call to be more ecologically sensitive.

Nkosi sikeleli Afrika

We pray for our Province of SAP, and we pray for each of the four Sectors. May we each be true witnessing Apostles and good stewards in our mission and service of Africa where we are – and may our Mother Mary, Queen of Africa, guide and direct all our actions to and through her beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. May His Kingdom come.

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SAP Young Confreres meeting in FENZA, Zambia.


young-confreres-feb-2017-02-jpegSAP Young Confreres are meeting in FENZA, Zambia, to share their experiences as missionaries. They all have a few years of ministry and full of zeal. The participants are: Remacle Lamec Ciza from Henley-KwaMphumuza, South Africa, Frank Mbala Kalala from Sussundenga, Mozambique, Benjamin Itungabose from Kasamba, Zambia, Mathew Banseh from Lumimba, Zambia, Douglas Moumanyi Ogato from Serenje, Zambia, Lawrence Tukamushaba from Kasama, Zambia, Africano Mucunguzi from Mua, Malawi, Emmanuel Barongo from Kanengo, Malawi, Alain Christian Muhineza from Namushakende, Zambia and Jean-Bosco Nibigira from Dombe, Mozambique.

Animators: Deogratias Ngowi from Merrivale, South Africa and Justin Sebakunzi from Lua-Luo Spiritual Formation Centre, Zambia. Also on the picture: Felix Phiri, SAP Provincial.

We celebrate our 150th Anniversary!


A short history.

The Society of the Missionaries of Africa (M.Afr) was founded in Algeria, in 1868 by Cardinal Charles Lavigerie, Archbishop of Algiers; he would later be-come Cardinal Lavigerie (July 1882). From the beginning, this new missionary society took the Arab dress: the “gandoura”, with, as a religious sign, a rosary worn like a necklace. This earned them the name “White Fathers”. One year later, in 1869, Cardinal Lavigerie also founded the Congregation of the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa (MSOLA). Today, there are 1,232 Missionaries of Africa, from 37 Nationalities, working in 42 Countries, 22 of which are in Africa. They live in 217 communities; with a further 486 candidates at various stages of formation.

150-anniversary-m-afr-logo-saSouth Africa.

At the request of the Malawi Catholic Bishops’ Conference, in 1969 the Missionaries of Africa finally came down to South Africa in order to minister to the 70,000 Malawian migrants working in the lucrative mines around Johannesburg, Rustenburg and Witbank. The Malawian Catholic Mine Chaplaincy soon became the Catholic Mine Chaplaincy as the first missionary communities answered the call of all migrant mine workers, drawn from the neighbouring countries, to have a Catholic presence in their mine. Twenty years later the mine chaplaincy was integrated into each Diocese, through parish structures.

Our commitments over the years.

As the Missionaries of Africa became more known; new requests for communities were sent to the General House in Rome. The response was positive, and in rather quick succession, missionary communities were founded in Bethlehem Diocese: Phuthaditjhaba/Qwaqwa and eventually Bohlokong; in Pretoria Archdiocese in the KwaNdebele region: Tweefontein, Siyabuswa and Diepsloot; in Witbank Diocese: Kamhlushwa, Malelane and eventually KwaGuqa; in Johannesburg Archdiocese: Soweto (Zola, Zondi, Emdeni and Protea North), Orange Farm, and later, Lenasia.

From 1998 to 2004, three of our Missionaries ran the Lumko Institute in Benoni. The most recent insertion is a formation house in Durban Archdiocese: Merri-vale has more than 30 theology students from various African countries who study theology at Cedara St. Joseph Institute. Furthermore, we have two parishes near Pietermaritsburg: Henley and KwaMpumuza. Our students enjoy going there for their weekend apostolate.

A community in Edenglen, Johannesburg, acts as a hub for administration and vocation animation, while welcoming many visitors. At the same time, the priests of this community offer much appreciated services to local parishes, groups, schools and religious communities of that area and beyond.

And the mission goes on…

In their almost 50 years in South Africa (2019), the Missionaries of Africa living in communities, have tried to respond to requests for primary evangelisation, and moving on when the local Church has been established. Due to dwindling numbers and the maturity of the local Church in South Africa, today communities are found in the formation house in Merrivale, Henley,  KwaMpumuza, Bethlehem, Lenasia and Edenglen; 17 confreres in all.

The contribution has been modest but sincere; a missionary effort to building a vibrant local Church. The presence of a Formation House bodes well for the future and will ensure a Missionaries of Africa presence in South Africa for the foreseeable future.

We sincerely hope and pray that this Jubilee celebration will finally arouse in some young men the desire of a true vocation as Missionaries of Africa. What a wonderful gift from the South African Church this would be to us! Please, pray for us!

With God’s blessings.

Missionaries of Africa, P.O. Box 10057, Edenglen 1613, South Africa. Tel: 011 452 5283.

Towards the 150th anniversary of our foundation – Letter 4 – December 01, 2016


m-afr-and-m-s-o-l-a-logo-pngDear Sisters and Brothers,

We are all preparing for the 8th December, our family feast. On this day, we can look back on our first year of preparation for the 150th Anniversary of our foundation which started on 30th of April 2016. Let us thank God for the reflections and prayers we were able to hold together. The rereading of parts of our common history has led us to gratitude for our common charism and to reconciliation among ourselves. Wherever this happened, our ties have been strengthened. This movement leads us naturally to the theme chosen for the second year that will begin on 9th December 2016: “To live our common charism together today with passion”.

We understand this as our willingness to be prophetic in our way of living and in our way of acting.

This year, both our Institutes have taken a long loving look at the present and discerned what God could be asking of us today. How can we actualize our charism? During the General Chapter, for the Missionaries of Africa, and during the Enlarged Council, for the Missionaries of Our Lady of Africa, both Institutes discerned the apostolic choices to which we feel called today.

The areas identified were: “dialogue and encounter”, “care of the environment”, “modern slavery and human trafficking”, “migrants”.

Together we want to become even more conscious of what is happening, where we are in relation to the above, what are the calls that we perceive. As members of the same Lavigerie family, we want to collaborate so as to seek solutions and ways of acting together. We want to make prophetic gestures which do not always need to be very extraordinary, but which are meaningful and can be seen as such by others. We want to involve, where possible, the groups of collaborators, friends, and associates. It is for us an opportunity to fortify our missionary spirit together.

We know that in many countries, our communities come together to celebrate the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. On that day, you could program when to meet throughout 2017 in order to discern the calls you feel in your context and to think of prophetic gestures that can be carried out together.

The coordinating committee will help us celebrate this coming year.

We are sure that in this way, Cardinal Lavigerie and Mother Marie-Salomé will recognise their sons and daughters. Happy feast day on the 8th December, and may Christmas be for us a call to live with passion our charism today!

Your sister and brother in the Lord and in Lavigerie.

Sr. Carmen Sammut, MSOLA                                     Fr. Stanley Lubungo, M.Afr

Superior General                                                          Superior General

Link:

https://mafrsaprovince.com/2015/11/25/towards-the-150th-anniversary-of-our-foundation/

Official Opening of the Formation House 18th November 2016


chipata-formation-centre-logoThe official opening of our Pre-First Phase Provincial formation Centre of the Missionaries of Africa, called Lavigerie Formation Centre, will take place on November 18.

Under the jurisdiction of the Southern Africa Province (SAP), namely Zambia, South Africa, Mozambique and Malawi, the Centre welcomes young aspirants from those countries for their first experience in an international setup in view of sending them to Balaka, Malawi, for their studies in Philosophy. The formation Centre has a capacity of welcoming twenty aspirants.

The guest of honor, Lord Bishop George Lungu of Chipata, will preside over Mass.

Timetable of the day: 10:00 Mass – 13:00 Snacks and refreshments – 15:00 Entertainment

Venue: Lavigerie formation Centre, Malawi road, after Luthembwe Bridge, Chipata, Zambia.

first-phase-chipata