Month: May 2015 Page 1 of 3

Prayer for the 28th General Chapter

Prayer of 28th Chapter

The Invitation of the DACB Seminar

Peter Mutasha 2013By Peter Mutasha

On 8th April, 2015, I attended a seminar on the Dictionary of African Christian Biography (DACB) at Justo Mwale University in Lusaka. The seminar was facilitated by the Director of the project (DACB) Professor Jonathan Bonk from Canada. The attendees were a variety of religious leaders from different Christian denominations, representatives of organisations, university Professors and students. The focus was mainly to present the Dictionary of African Christian Biography.

This dictionary, which is an international online database, is a biography of African Christian leaders (clergy, catechist and lay people) and Christians who have contributed to the laying of the Christian foundation, shaped the character and propagated for its growth in Africa. And the reason for doing this is to “advance a scholarly understanding of African Christianity” which in the paraphrased words of Professor Bonk is scarcely available in many universities in Africa but more especially in the western world.

The biographies of these African Christians are categorised according to their country of origin. And according to the database presentation of Zambia, few stories of those committed Christians were reflected and moreover little about Catholic African Christians has been written. The Professor appealed to the Catholic community that more should be written about those people who significantly participated in the evangelisation of Christianity in Zambia. For me the appear was sincere and besides the Catholic Church has been a mainline Christian church in Zambia since 1891; during this epoch there have been significant figures who have enhanced the expansion of Catholicism. Such are the people the seminar encouraged that we write about them.

We concluded our seminar with wonderful sneaks and though the group of attendees was small (at least 20), the presentation and participation from the audience created an enthralling intellectual discursive atmosphere.

DACB logoFor those who would like to contribute to this biography or want more information; you can visit:

It is available in Français, Português and Kiswahili.

Together in the eradication of modern slavery – Day of recollection

Recollection-25-05-2015-bThe Missionaries of Africa in Lusaka, Sisters, Brothers and Priests, gathered for a day recollection on Monday the 25th May 2015 under the theme: together in the eradication of modern slavery. Prayers, sharing from the Word of God of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10: 30-33) and the inspiring presentation of todays’ slavery in the world given by Jacek Rakowski, gave us the opportunity to remind ourselves that modern slavery is widespread all over the world. This form of abuse is incompatible with our dignity as children of God. The root causes are many; poverty, lack of education, corruption, conflicts, violence and criminality. The global scale of slavery is calling for a global answer whereby governments, business people, international organisations and so on have a crucial role to play in the fight against modern slavery. As Christians, we fight also for our common fraternity.
Traffickhing sheet logoThe recollection took place at Retreat and Renewal Centre of Assisi House situated on the compound of St. Bonaventure University College in Lusaka. This College offers Diploma in Psycho-Spirituality and Religious Studies under the care of the Franciscan Spiritual Family.

Newsletter South Africa No 51 – 26th May, 2015

Newsletter 51

Newsletter South Africa No 51 – 26th May, 2015

Our New SAP Provincial – Stanley Lubungo

Stanislas_LubunboDear Confreres,

Greetings from Woodlands.

I bring you good news! We have a new Provincial Superior for our dear Province! The Superior General has appointed Stanley Lubungo as our new Provincial from 1st July 2015 to 30th June 2018.

I would like to say a big CONGRATULATION to all of you for your voice and participation in this appointment. Congratulations also to Stan for accepting the appointment, indeed the wish of the confreres in the province.

One of the values we have maintained in our mega province is that of our closeness to Christ and the good will to do his mission together as confreres. During the recent consultation this was clearly expressed through your patience, respect and the fraternal advices you shared.

As we move into the next era of our beloved province my wish is that we continue in this same spirit especially during the period that the new leadership will be getting into place and settling down. Christ never fails, as long as we remain united with him, our province will also continue to excel.

Congratulations to all and God bless you.


 Christopher Chileshe

Beware of lions in Mozambique

Mozambique warning against lions

Invitation to the Priestly ordination of Kitha Makambi Paul, Karonga, Malawi

Paul Kitha Ordination card 2015The Bishop of Karonga Diocese,

His Lordship Martin A. Mtumbuka, the Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers), Mr and Mrs Kitha’s family and relatives are very glad to invite you to the Priestly ordination of their son Kitha Makambi Paul, on 1st August 2015 at 9:30am at Karonga.

Thanksgiving Mass will be held on Sunday 2nd August 2015 at St. Steven’s Parish Kasantha at 9:30am

The Society of the Missionaries of Africa expresses its gratitude for the Spiritual, Moral and material support you give to the newly ordained who will be going soon to his country of Mission.

Death of Father Clement Alekwe, 16th May 2015

From Fr. Dominic Apee, Provincial of Ghana-Nigeria Province

Clement_AlekweWith regret, we inform you of the return to the Lord of Father Clement Alekwe. He died on May 16th, 2015 in Nairobi, Kenyaat the age of 55 years, of which 23 of missionary life in Nigeria, Kenya, Zambia and Tanzania.

We woke up this morning to the very sad news of the death of our brother Clement Alekwe. He died in Nairobi early this morning 16th May 2015. In March he celebrated his 55th Birthday in Arusha.

In fact Clement has been ill for some time now. He went to India for medical care, and after a few months was brought back to Nairobi where he has since been following treatment.

Please pray for Clement and his family. No funeral arrangements yet. I would like to thank the Provincial and all the confreres in EAP (Nairobi) and also the confreres in India for the loving care they showed Clement during his sickness.

May he rest in peace.

Note: Father Alekwe was a member of the formation team in Lua-Luo, Kasama between 2010 and 2012.

From Nairobi:

clement_alekwe01Clement Alekwe passed away in Nairobi on 16th May 2015. He had been struggling with cancer for some time. During the last three years of his life he was a formator at St Mbaaga SFC. During this time he was receiving treatment in Nairobi – and when that failed he went to Bangalore. But unfortunately his cancer was too far advanced and he chose to return to Africa. He wished to end his days in Nairobi where he had worked for six years in the parish of Our Lady Queen of Peace. It was there that the funeral mass took place. 

His body was brought to the church on Wednesday 20th May at 18.00 hours and in the presence of a large group of confreres- from Nairobi, including all the candidates from the 4th phase formation house, from Arusha and Dar es Salaam, parishioners and religious, Fr Martin Onyango, the parish priest of Our lady Queen of Peace, celebrated the Eucharist. This was followed by an over-night vigil. Some people from the parish remained in the church throughout the night, singing and praying. 

The funeral mass was presided the next day by Fr Charles Obanya, the provincial superior of EAP. The homily was given by Fr Victor Shehu, a fellow Nigerian confrere. He had worked as a stagiaire together with Clement in that parish. At the end of Mass eulogies were given by Fr Felix Phiri (Nairobi sector superior), Clement’s cousin brother (who had come to Nairobi from Nigeria together with Clement’s younger brother), by Dave Sullivan of St Mbaaga SFC, by the provincial of EAP and by representatives of the parish, of the archdiocese and of the “Lavigerie Family”. 

Clement was then taken to St Austin’s cemetery where, surrounded by his confreres and friends, he was laid to rest. In this cemetery he is in the company of about six other Missionaries of Africa.

Dave Sullivan, M.Afr, St Mbaaga SFC, Arusha

clement_alekwe03    clement_alekwe09

Entre les mailles de Boko Haram

Entre les mailles de Boko HaramThis article was written by a Canadian journalist about the situation our confreres are facing in Nigeria. It is good to know what newspapers are printing about us, as missionaries.

Par Mylène Moisan du journal La Presse+ Édition du 17 mai 2015, Section Actualité.

Quand Cyriaque Mounkoro est arrivé au Nigeria, il se demandait bien comment diable il allait parvenir à faire quoi que ce soit dans ce pays grugé par la corruption et la violence. Il ne se disait pas diable, mais plutôt bon Dieu. Le monsieur est un missionnaire, malien, père blanc, très gentil.

C’était en 2002, il venait d’être ordonné à Londres. « Mon premier choix, ce n’était pas le Nigeria. J’avais peur, comme les autres. » Il a rejoint deux autres missionnaires parachutés là pour faire du bien, peu importe comment.

La même année, Mohamed Yusuf fondait Boko Haram. Personne ne se méfiait, il y avait au pays des dizaines de milliers de prédicateurs comme lui.

Le Nigeria était déjà un invraisemblable bourbier : 170 millions d’habitants, 250 ethnies, 500 langues, le sud chrétien, le nord, musulman. « La première chose qui m’a frappé, c’est l’intégrisme religieux, autant chez les chrétiens que chez les musulmans. Il y avait des conflits entre les chrétiens modérés et les chrétiens intégristes, entre les chrétiens et les musulmans, et entre les musulmans modérés et les musulmans intégristes. »

Et Cyriaque, avec son col romain, au milieu de tout ça.

Il a écrit à son supérieur, non pas pour lui dire de le sortir de là au plus vite, mais pour lui dire exactement le contraire. « Je lui ai écrit que le Nigeria, c’était la meilleure expérience pour un missionnaire. C’est une zone de fractures, et elles sont multiples. Comme il y a des problèmes partout, il y a quelque chose à faire partout. »

Le genre de gars à voir le verre au tiers plein.

Cyriaque aurait pu se planter dans son église à Ibadan et attendre que les gens viennent l’entendre faire ses sermons sur l’importance de se parler, de faire fi des différences, des religions, des langues, des ethnies.

Il est facile de prêcher à des convertis.

Cyriaque a plutôt envoyé une lettre à Washington, où les Missionnaires d’Afrique ont un bureau de développement – je traduis littéralement « Development Office » –, qui finance toutes sortes de projets des missionnaires sur le terrain. Cyriaque voulait s’attaquer à un autre problème insoluble du pays, l’accès à l’eau potable.

Plus du tiers des Nigérians n’y ont pas accès. Ça donne 63 millions de personnes, et environ 4 % des enfants de moins de cinq ans qui meurent de dysenterie. En 2014, Boko Haram a sauvagement tué plus de 4000 personnes. Le manque d’eau et les épouvantables conditions d’hygiène, 73 000.

Cyriaque a eu une idée.

« Je me suis servi du financement de projets pour promouvoir le dialogue. Pour qu’un projet soit accepté, il fallait que les gens de la communauté s’assoient ensemble et qu’ils parviennent à un consensus. »

Cyriaque Mounkoro 2Cyriaque Mounkoro

Pas de consensus, pas d’eau.

« Si la demande venait d’un seul groupe, elle était refusée. La population devait surmonter les différences ethniques et religieuses, et se mettre d’accord pour établir un programme d’entretien et de rentabilité. Je leur disais : si vous voulez de l’eau, vous devez vous parler. Des fois, ça pouvait prendre six mois, neuf mois, un an, juste pour qu’ils arrivent à s’asseoir ensemble. »

Ils ont réussi 25 fois, un peu partout au pays, au nord comme au sud. « En faisant ça, je n’ai pas besoin de leur parler pendant une heure de l’amour du prochain. Les grands discours préparés avec soin sur le dialogue, sur l’importance de combattre la corruption, ça porte moins de fruits que ça… »

C’est une goutte d’eau dans une mare de sang.

Dans un rapport qu’il a produit pour le bureau de Washington qui a financé les 25 projets, Cyriaque en profite pour poser un diagnostic sur le pays. « Dans l’histoire du Nigeria, le tribalisme, la religion et la politique ont été les trois vers qui ont affaibli l’unité de la société. » Et qui ont engendré Boko Haram.

Ainsi, pendant que les quelques pères blancs faisaient forer des puits, Boko Haram a éliminé 13 000 personnes et en a fait fuir 1,5 million. Cyriaque et les autres missionnaires ont dû composer avec la mort – et surtout la peur – que le groupe semait sur son passage. « En 2013, on devait ordonner un père dans un village. Une semaine avant, des gens sont venus brûler le village et égorger les chrétiens… »

Les membres de Boko Haram ne sont plus vraiment regardants, ils tuent aussi les musulmans qui ne sont pas des fous d’Allah. « Quand des musulmans sont tués, les gens prennent conscience que ce n’est pas juste contre les chrétiens. Il y a des leaders qui commencent à se lever… »

Cyriaque était de passage à Québec récemment pour une retraite. Il a quitté le pays en août dernier, après 13 ans. « Je pars avec deux sentiments contradictoires. Le premier, c’est que les Nigérians sont de nature très chaleureuse, ils sont très généreux et ils ont un sens de l’hospitalité incroyable. Mais, en même temps, il y a un niveau inouï d’insécurité, du banditisme, des gens qu’on égorge comme des animaux, pour l’argent ou pour Dieu. »

Cyriaque a été kidnappé en décembre 2008 par une douzaine de jeunes. Il a été chanceux, c’était pour l’argent. Quand c’est pour Dieu, ça ne pardonne pas.

Launch of “the year of consecrated life and integral development” at Marian Shrine, 7th February 2015

Marian Shrine event 27By Prudentia Mumbi and Theresa Sikateyo

It was wonderful to see Missionaries of Africa (M.Afr), Missionaries Sisters of Our Lady of Africa (MSOLA), and Missionaries with Missionaries of Africa (MIMSAF) at one corner explaining to the many Catholic Priests and Religious and the Laity what our charism, vision and mission is. The exhibit side of MIMSAF was placed between M.Afr and MSOLA. Prudentia Mumbia, Theresa Sikateyo, Phillip Chimponda and our Chaplain Fr. Vitalis Dero Owino represented all members of MIMSAF.

 “If we will not document it, it will be difficult to show that we participated in the launch of the year’s theme: The Year of Consecrated Life and Integral Development Held at Marian Shrine”.

It sounded like impossible when the Provincial Fr. Christopher Chileshe challenged MIMSAF to position itself in the works of the Missionaries of Africa especially during the launch of the year’s theme where all congregations were expected to participate and show case their charisms.  

The day was characterized by talks from Priests, Religious and the Laity. In addition to the talk’s there were exhibitions of what each congregation is involved in trying to explain their charism and how they translated their charism to the theme of the year. One could pick a number of touching phrases to learn from as each speaker spoke: * Origin of Consecrated Life; bear witness, put lives at the service, rooted in the Trinity. * Like Christ in the Kingdom of God “for to me to live is Christ” Phil 1. * Jesus example of obedience – Doing the will of God. * Look at the past with gratitude. * Live the present with passion. * Embrace the future with hope. * Translate the gospel into a particular way of life. * Reflect on our charisms; look at the difficulties, challenges and learn from them; confess to the Church, ourselves and the people we serve. * Examine our fidelity to the Mission entrusted to us. * As ministers be in tuned to what our founders had. * Passion for Humanity and Christ * listening to what the Spirit is saying to us today.

Challenges were outlined: * Openness to be challenged by the gospel. * Live radically and sincerity. * Jesus our first and only love. * Decreasing vocation; economic and globalization. Let’s not blame one another but we have to be together and dialogue.

What is the source of our joy?

God is enough for me (St. Teresa of Avila). * Authenticity; another source of our joy. * What am I supposed to do?

The exhibitions were colorful and very educative.

Link: Launching of the year dedicated to consecrated life – Marian Shrine – Lusaka, February 07, 2015

Marian Shrine event 27c

Page 1 of 3

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén