In April 2022, Deacon Joaquim BELITO JOSÉ who was still finishing his theological studies in Jerusalem was called to be Ordained as a priest. Once this good news reached the Sector of Mozambique, the deacon’s family and parishioners, they all started to prepare towards this great occasion. The Archbishop then set the 22nd of June 2022 as the date for this Priestly Ordination.
Vocation Journey of Deacon Joaquim BELITO JOSÉ
Deacon Belito started his vocation journey with the Missionaries of Africa with “Come and See” programs in 2011 at Beira, Mozambique and another one in 2012 at Serenje, Zambia. Afterwards, he went to Ejisu, Ghana for his philosophical studies in 2012 and completed in 2015. He then continued in 2015 to Noviciate in Arusha, Tanzania. After spending one year in Noviciate, he went to Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso in 2016 for a two-year Stage (Pastoral Experience). He finally went to Jerusalem from 2018 to 2022 for his theological studies where he took his Missionary Oath and was ordained a deacon.
On the morning of the 22nd of June 2022, it started to drizzle as all the Missionaries of Africa, family members and friends of Deacon Joaquim BELITO JOSÉ, and all the Christians headed the Nossa Senhora de Fatima Parish of Beira. On this faithful day, our confrere was ordained with two other deacons, and one acolyte to the deaconate, all diocesans. The long entrance procession started at 9:15 am with joyful songs and acclamations. The Archbishop of Beira Dom Claudio (the main celebrant), Emeritus Bishop João Silota (M.Afr), and the Sector Delegate of Mozambique, Fr. Raphaël Gasimba (M.Afr) among many others graced the occasion.
In his homily, the Archbishop of Beira Dom Claudio, thanked the families and parishioners of the ordinands for offering their sons to God for the proclamation of the Gospel. In them, he added, God wants to reach out the needs of his people and have a boundaryless Church. The main celebrant reminded the ordinands of the unconditional love God has shown to them by choosing them, as God does not choose us by our merits. Without this love, no one can pretend to be dignified. Therefore, being aware of the mercy of God in their lives, they should reveal the love of the Father, his plan of salvation to their brothers and sisters by presenting the offering of the people to God. And as Jesus, reconciled the world with God, priests should play this role in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the Archbishop continued. They should also be the voice of the voiceless, and feed their sheep as the Good Shepherd. To be able to do this, they should accept to lose all the advantages of the world for the sake of the mission of God, following Jesus without turning back. May they always count on the prayers of the Church and the intercession of all the saints, as expressed in the litany of the saints during the ordination rite.
Towards the end of the celebration, the Archbishop proceeded to send-off the newly ordained to the Mission. Our confrere Belito was sent to Niger, a good sign that the local Church is contributing to the Universal Mission of the Church. After the Eucharistic celebration, there was a meal with the newly ordained. Later in the evening of the same day, the Sector organised a reception at Centro de Formação de Nazaré where Missionaries of Africa, family of the newly ordained and friends rejoiced for the grace of the ordination of their son, confrere and friend. What a blessing! Fr. Belito is now the 5th Mozambican missionary of Africa.
On the 10th of July 2022, Fr. Belito celebrated his thanksgiving Mass at Marromeu with the two other newly ordained diocesan priests, all from the same parish.
« …The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest» (Lc 10,2).
Sector of Mozambique!
By Fr. Augustin Kambale (M.Afr)