Father Dominic Kapatamoyo’s Priestly Ordination in Chezi, Malawi – July 7, 2018


19 Dominic ordiBy Vitus Danaa Abobo, M.Afr

On the 7th of July, the parish of Chezi in Malawi witnessed an unforgettable event as our confrere Dominic Kapatamoyo was ordained priest. There was a big crowd of people present to this memorable event, the first of its kind in the parish. Sisters, Brothers, Fathers and students in formation from Balaka, all members of the Lavigerie’s family, were present in their numbers together with other religious congregations, diocesan priests, various religious denominations, family members and friends as well as parishioners. Also present were Archbishop Tarsizio G. Ziyaye and our confrere Bishop Emeritus Remi Sainte-Marie.

A priest is another Christ chosen and sent out to serve and console the people of God in order to show them what the Kingdom of God entails. Archbishop Ziyaye agreed with the invite of Cardinal Lavigerie to his missionaries “to be apostles, nothing but apostles”. Being apostles should become our being. Ending his homily, the Archbishop invited everyone to pray for the priest to be ordained, that the Lord may give him all the graces that he needs.

The Archbishop was touched by the fact that Dominic is the son of a long-serving catechist, Mr Kapatamoyo. He was also happy that Dominic was ordained priest as a Missionary of Africa adding that “they are like our parents”, being the first missionaries to bring the gospel in that part of the world. He was happy about the good organisation of the event and active participation of the people, seeing it as a golden opportunity for vocation promotion.

The Provincial Delegate in Malawi, Father Michel Sanou, expressed his gratitude and happiness to the parishioners of Chezi for the good organisation. This remarkable event is a golden opportunity to call other youths to follow the example of Dominic to answer the call to missionary life.

At the end of the Mass, Father Felix Phiri, the Provincial of the Southern Africa Province (SAP), emphasised the missionary nature of the work as Missionaries of Africa. Like the missionaries working in Chezi Parish, originating from other African countries, Dominic will be working away from his home parish. On that note, he announced that the newly ordained priest is sent to Mingana in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) where he already spent two years for pastoral training during his initial formation.

14 Dominic ordiThe Provincial added that the presence of representatives from Protestant churches shows a sense of solidarity among the Christians of different denominations. The event of the day is also a visible fruit of the Missionaries of Africa celebrating its 150th anniversary of foundation. He remarked how the work and faith of Dominic’s father as a catechist has been a pillar for Dominic’s vocation journey.

Filled with joy, Father Dominic expressed his gratitude to God for the gift of his priestly ordination, seeing it as a humbling honour. He was impressed by the sacrifices the parishioners, confreres, family and friends made since December 2017 to ensure the success of the event. He was also overjoyed by the presence of so many people, two bishops and friends from Zimbabwe, France, Ireland and Kenya to witness his ordination. For Dominic, the presence of all these people from far and near is a sign of the Church’s unity. In a sense of gratitude, he asked God to be with him in his priestly calling.

The ordination of Father Dominic was for the Missionaries of Africa a time of coming together to support, pray with and thank the Lord. It also became for the parish of Chezi a moment of working together to support and pray for and with their own son. For the parents of the newly ordained, the celebration was the answer to their prayers since their son started his formation with the Missionaries of Africa.

May God richly reward you all for the support rendered to us to make Dominic’s ordination a success.

 

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Mua Parish Celebration in Dedza diocese, Malawi.


Mua 08
Vice-President of the Republic of Malawi Dr Saulos Chilima making a speech.

By Robert Kalindiza

On Saturday the 23rd September 2017, Vice-President of the Republic of Malawi, Right Honourable Saulos Klaus Chilima, attended an important celebration at Mua parish which was celebrating 115 years since its establishment. At the same occasion, Father Claude Boucher Chisale celebrated his golden jubilee of priesthood while the catechist Simon Panyani celebrated his silver jubilee.

Highly attended, the Kungoni troupe dance formed some twenty years ago by Father Boucher, gave a great performance. Mgr Emmanuele Kanyama, Bishop of Dedza diocese, enhanced the occasion with over twenty diocesan and missionary priests in attendance. Even Juliana Lunguzi, Member of Parliament for Dedza East who happens to be a Christian of Mua parish, was present.

During his speech, Father Felix Phiri, Provincial of the Missionaries of Afrika commended Father Claude Boucher for planting good seeds in the hearts of Mua people and elsewhere through the preservation of African culture. Nowadays, few missionaries can expect to remain for very long at the same place. Father Boucher is one of the few. But, as he says; “an old tree cannot be replanted, otherwise it will die.”

The Vice-President also commended the work of Father Boucher Chisale thereby urging other people to do the same. He also advised the gathering to take care of the environment in order to avoid contributing to faster climate change. The celebration ended with a great feast at the Fathers’ house.

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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.

New publication on Inter-Religious Dialogue in Africa.


inter-religious-dialogue-in-africa-dec-2016-01Felix Phiri, M.Afr., Patrick Ryan, MHM (Eds), Inter-Religious Dialogue in Africa, In Search of Religious Respects, Ecumenical Centre for Justice and Peace, Paulines Publications Africa, 99 pages, 2016.

The topic of religious conflict is a concern of politicians, theologians, religious leaders and representatives, civil society and a wide range of stakeholders in the public and private domains.

This book is a sequel to the Manual for Inter-Religious Dialogue (Nairobi, 2012). That book was aimed at assisting religious leaders, facilitators and other actors in the broad field of inter-religious dialogue.

This book is a series of notes on selected aspects of dialogue between religions. It is not itself a manual of dialogue, but it is a companion to the Manual for Inter-Religious Dialogue. It is intended for professionals, for students of religion, and for all people of good will who believe in promoting dialogue among religions.

the-golden-ruleThis book reinforces the urgency of dialogue between religions. There is no alternative to dialogue when it comes to building durable and peaceful co-existence.

The Golden Rule – treat others as you would like them to treat you – also known as the Ethic of Reciprocity, has been valued by human societies for thousands of years and is found worldwide throughout cultures, religions, secular philosophies and indigenous traditions. It reveals a profound unity underlying the rich diversity of human experience. With its emphasis on mutuality, interdependence and reciprocity, it is a simple but effective guide for respectful and harmonious co-existence.

http://www.columban.org.au/our-works/christian-muslim-relations/the-golden-rule

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pdf-the-golden-rule-front-pagegolden-rule-brochure-2014

Official Opening of the SAP Pre-Formation Centre in Chipata, Zambia.


chipata-formation-centre-01bBy Timothée Bationo, M.Afr

The story started in Beira, Mozambique, in 2012 with a meeting of the Vocation Directors. They were looking for ways of improving their relationship between the four Sectors of the SAP Province and the Formation Centre in Balaka, Malawi, where our candidates make their studies in philosophy.

The creation of a Pre-First Phase was then proposed to the Provincial Council and forwarded to the General Council in Rome. A green light was given to build a centre in Chipata situated in the Eastern Province of Zambia. The town is surrounded by hills and is about 20 kilometres from Malawi and less than 140 kilometres to the Mozambican border. Therefore, the three countries could easily get involved in following the progress of their respective students.

Father Jean-Luc Gouiller started looking for a piece of land and the ground work started in 2014. The buildings were completed in December 2015. We entered into the centre in the second week of January 2016 with an initial number of 18 students from Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia. They remained up to June 2016. The second academic year started on October 12, 2016. The Formation Centre currently has once more 18 students together with three staff members, namely Brother René Garand, Father Camille Konkobo and Father Timothée Bationo.

The SAP Pre-Formation Centre was officially blessed by Bishop George Lungu on November 18, 2016. Mass was presided by the Bishop outside the premises as the church building would have been too small to contain the crowd. The Bishop was pleased to see that the official opening was just two days away from the closure of the Year of Mercy. Consequently, the official opening of the Formation Centre coincided with the closure of the Year of Mercy at the diocesan level.

Various committees from Saint Athanasio Parish were established to take care of the catering, liturgy, security and reception. By 05:00, they were already setting up everything before the arrival of the Christians and the Bishop at 7:00. Some members of the Provincial Council were delayed a bit at the border with Malawi.

Leading the procession, Bishop George Lungu and Father Felix Phiri, the Provincial, cut the ribbon at the main gate of the centre to symbolise the official opening of the Formation Centre while the diocesan choir sang a Thanksgiving song. In a colourful procession, the Bishop blessed the chapel and other buildings. At Mass, the Bishop praised the work done by the missionaries in the past, what they are doing today and what is to come. He was grateful to the Society for building a Formation Centre in his diocese. He encouraged the Formation House to open its doors to people who would like to have retreats. The Formators are welcomed exercising their apostolate all around Chipata.

The Provincial blessed each student with a symbolic cross representing the beginning of their formation.

All the missionaries, Fathers and Sisters, came together to sing the Santa Maria song. Few speeches were conducted at the end of Mass including Father Gouiller, Father Felix Phiri, Father Timothée Bationo, the Bishop, the DCL President and a Government Official. Finally, the Master of Ceremony, Father Kamanga, invited everybody to share a meal. A final blessing came at the end of the day with the first rain of the farming season.

Members of staff at the formation house will ever remain grateful to the people who took part in the organisation and preparations of the official opening of the centre. We will always remember you in our prayers as we preach the Word of God.

Merry Christmas to you all and a Prosperous New Year in 2017.

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Links: Lavigerie Formation Centre, Mchini Parish, Chipata.

Canonical inauguration of the ‘Paróquia nossa senhora das Gracas’ Parish in Tete, Mozambique – October 8, 2016.


inauguration-of-parish-tete-04By Dimitri Yampa, stagiaire in Dombe Parish.   

From Sussundenga, the Nazare Centre in Beira and Dombe, the Missionaries of Africa together with Mozambican aspirants and stagiaires, went to Tete escorted by the ‘coluna’ because of the war affecting this area of Mozambique. Our new Superior General, Stanley Lubungo, and our new Provincial, Felix Phiri, came by the road from Lusaka, Zambia. On October 8, the mother parish of the Saint Martyrs of Uganda of Matungu in Tete gave birth to a new child; the ‘Paróquia nossa senhora das Gracas’ Parish.

The new parish was erected canonically by Bishop Inácio Saure of Tete Diocese. The ceremony started with a procession followed by the opening of the church’s doors, the ointment of the altar together with the walls inside the church. On that same occasion, Pierre Lukusa, M.Afr, was officially installed as Parish Priest.

Bishop Inácio Saure concelebrated Mass with many priests like the Missionaries of Africa, the Combonians, the Salesians, the Jesuits and diocesan priests. The Bishop invited the new Parish Priest to a collaborative ministry by carrying out his mission with joy while visiting his parishioners in their families and small communities. Symbolically, the keys of the church were given to Father Lukusa after the homely of the Bishop.

The Christians were thankful for the presence of so many Missionaries of Africa coming from abroad. Stanley Lubungo made a speech in English underlined the history of our missionaries in Mozambique, which was moderated in Portuguese by padre João de Deus (Jean de Dieu Bukuru), M.Afr. The new M.Afr community of Tete was given the mission to spread the spirit of the Society in their ministry by living in a community enriched by its values of openness and interculturality.

A fraternal meal was provided at the house of the Sisters of São José of Cluny. Everything was well organised by the Christians of the new parish. Gifts were offered to the Bishop as a sign of unity. The party ended at 17:30 by the benediction of the Bishop. May God bless this new mission and the Society of the Missionaries of Africa. 

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Canonical inauguration of the ‘Paróquia nossa senhora das Gracas’ Parish in Tete, Mozambique – October 8, 2016.

Oath and Diaconate in Merrivale, October 1, 2016


oath-diaconate-2016-45St. Joseph’s Parish church was packed on Saturday morning to celebrate the Oath and Diaconate of six Missionaries of Africa students. The broadcast was pretty grim with rain but gave way to a mix cloudy and sunny day though hailstones fell heavily at the end of the day. With them, two Sacred Heart candidates from DRCongo were also ordained Deacons together with eleven M.Afr students who received the ministry of Acolyte.

Were also present our Superior General, Stan Lubungo, our Provincial, Felix Phiri, Neil Frank , President of St. Joseph’s Theological Institute and Bishop Emmanuel Kerketta of the Diocese of Jashpur in India[1]. The main celebrant was our confrere Bishop Jan De Groef. Many other priests, religious and relatives or friends were present at this joyful feast sang in various languages; English, French, Ndebele, Kiswahili, Kinyarwanda, IsiZulu, Lingala and Latin.

Refreshments were offered after Mass in the parish hall and a meal in our formation Centre in Merrivale, about fifteen minutes away by car from the church.  

Brief presentation of the new Deacons.alfred-nkundimana-2016_jpeg

Born in 1984, Alfred Nkundimana is Rwandese. He began his preparatory year in Burundi. He was then sent for three years of philosophical studies in Bukavu, DRCongo. He made his spiritual year in Burkina Faso and was sent in South Africa for his pastoral experience. He is a qualified nurse. He joined Merrivale in 2014.

daniel-iraguha-2016_jpegBorn in 1986, Daniel Iraguha is Rwandese. He began his formation with the M.Afr in Burundi from where he went to Bukavu in the DRCongo for three years of philosophical studies. He then went to Burkina Faso for his Spiritual Year and made his stage in Gao, Mali.

amorain-wayikpo-2016_jpegAmorain Wayikpo (Kwami) is Togolese and was born in 1981. After completing his studies in geography, he began his philosophical studies in 2007 in Ouagadougou and then went for his spiritual year in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso. In 2011, he was sent to Rwanda for his two years pastoral experience. He joined Merrivale community in 2014.

anthony-wie-2016_jpegBorn in 1980, Anthony Wie Batieka is Ghanean. After a few months of preparation in Nigeria, he did his philosophical studies in Ghana. In 2010, he was sent for spiritual year in Burkina Faso. He then went to Burundi for his pastoral experience.

erick-balderas-vega-2016_jpegErick Balderas Vega is Mexican and was born in 1981. After studying philosophy in a diocesan seminary, he spent two years in our house of formation in Mexico. He was then sent to Zambia for his spiritual year and his pastoral experience which he made in Kabwata Parish in Lusaka.

theophile-sam-2016_jpegTheophile Pegwedewende Sam is Burkinabe, born in 1984. He did his philosophical studies in Ouagadougou and his spiritual year in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso. In 2011, he was sent for pastoral experience in Uganda and, after two years of pastoral experience, he joined our house of formation in Merrivale.

[1] Three M.Afr originate from his Diocese: Filiyanus Ekka, Erus Kishor Tirkey and Anand Kujur. Bishop Kerketta is very proud of it.

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Also the following students received the ministry of acolyte: Philippe Dakono (Malian), Christopher Nkandu (Zambian), Martin Somda (Burkinabe), Victor Sanou (Burkinabe), Éric Kambale (Congolese), Ryan Contamina (Filipino), Silas Nsabimana (Burundian), Robert Ouedraogo (Burkinabe), Dominic Shiby (Indian), Francis Eze (Nigerian) and Pierre Chanel Ulama (Congolese).

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Click below to read the translation of this article in Italian thanks to Luigi Morell, M.Afr:

Giuramento e Diaconato a Merrivale: 01 Ottobre 2016.

Aussi en français:

Serment et diaconat à Merrivale

New SAP Provincial


Felix Phiri 03Greetings from Rome.

I am delighted to announce that SAP has a new Provincial Superior! Fr Felix Phiri has been appointed as the new Provincial of SAP from 1st September 2016 to 30th June 2019.

Congratulations to all of you for your voice and participation in this appointment. I would also like to congratulate Felix and especially thank him for accepting the appointment.

Many thanks to all for your collaboration and dedication to the mission entrusted to our Society in Southern Africa. It had taken me time to move to the Provincial House and I had to go out as soon as I moved there! But mission continued thanks to the commitment of each one of you. I take this opportunity to thank all the Provincial Delegates for their leadership. I pray that the same spirit of mutual support, collaboration and oneness continues as the new Provincial who is presently in Nairobi prepares to join the Province.

Congratulations to all and God bless you.

Fraternally,

Stanley Lubungo (Outgoing Provincial)

News from Felix Phiri in Egypt


Felix Phiri 03The situation is still volatile here in Egypt. The political process towards democracy seems to be holding a lot of surprises for the now disillusioned Egyptians. Apart from some flash points here and there especially on Fridays, life continues with a lot of difficulties for most of the people. The cost of living seems to have increased beyond the reach of many and the new government of the Muslim Brothers is still struggling not only to pacify the masses but also to stabilize the economic situation. The relations between Christians and Muslims seem relatively less tense than soon after the departure of Mubarak. However, the future remains unpredictable.