Dear Priests, Deacons, Religious and Lay Faithful of the Archdiocese of Bulawayo,
HAPPY FEAST OF PENTECOST
According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church “The Church was made manifest to the world on the day of Pentecost by the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. The gift of the Spirit ushers in a new era in the dispensation of the mystery, during which Christ manifests, makes present and communicates His work of salvation through the liturgy of His Church until He comes (No. 1076). This means that whatever we do in the Church have to be led by the Spirit of God till the end of ages. In this year of “children and youth; a blessing to the family and the church” we need to empower our children and youth to be guided by the Spirit of God in all that they do. Parents have a special duty to ensure this in their families. Our theme song of the year goes “Bazali lilomlandu wokufundisa abantwana iCatechism”. May I urge all parents to be mindful of this responsibility that is laid upon you by God Himself. Catechism has to be learned at home as well as at the Church. Parents are the first catechists to their children. Let this Pentecost be a new beginning in this regard.
I wish each of you many blessings on this great feast of Pentecost.
1. The new Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis “Gaudete Et Exsultate” (Rejoice and be Glad) is a reminder to all Catholics to be holy in our daily lives and in all that we do. Through its pages Pope Francis constantly reminds us that “God wants us to be saints and not to settle for a bland and mediocre existence” (GE 1). He also reminds us that “holiness is the most attractive face of the Church” (GE 9). May I encourage each Catholic to read this and reflect seriously about it. Copies of this are available at the Bishops’ House. You may also access it online: vatican.va
2. Liturgical Matters: During the Holy Mass the responsorial psalm is recited or sung after the first reading. Whenever there is a second reading on Sundays, feast days, solemnities etc. immediately it is Acclamation (Alleluia) which is recited or sung. During lent it is “Glory and Praise to you, O Christ”. In some instances I notice choirs singing a hymn in place of acclamation after the second reading.
3. Church Protocol Issues: Let me remind all Catholics that Bulawayo is an Archdiocese. Therefore it is called Archdiocese of Bulawayo. Not mere Diocese. The head of an Archdiocese is Archbishop. Not mere Bishop. Quite often we hear Catholics here addressing it as Diocese. In the Catholic Church Pope is addressed as His Holiness. Cardinals are addressed as His Eminence. Archbishops are addressed as His Grace and Bishops are addressed as Your Lordship. Let us learn to use appropriate protocols to keep up the dignity of our Church.
4. Day of the African Child: As a follow up to the Pastoral Resolutions of this year on 16th June we will celebrate the day of the African Child at St. Patrick’s. This is organised by various youth groups of our Archdiocese in partnership with Caritas Bulawayo. Youth office will send out the invitations and programme for the same soon.
5. Extension of Emthonjeni Pastoral Centre: This was discussed and approved at the AGM of the laity and of the priests. The construction work will begin next week. I highly encourage all the faithful and associations to be part of this project. It is the project for the whole Archdiocese of Bulawayo. Let us be a fully a self supporting church in all that we do. All those who wish to contribute and donate towards this project kindly forward them to the Financial Administrator of the Archdiocese of Bulawayo. Some individuals, parishes and associations have already contributed towards this and I thank them sincerely for their commitment and seriousness.
6. Forth Coming Events:
6.1. Pilgrimage to Mount Inungu on 25th May.
6.2. Ordination of Priests on 28th July.
6.3. Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Fatima 17-19 August.
“Humility can only take root in the heart through humiliations.” (GE 118)
“Let us not fall into the temptation of looking for security in success, vain pleasures, possessions, power over others or social status.” (GE 121)
“I do not believe in holiness without prayer, even though that prayer need not be lengthy or involve intense emotions.” (GE 147)
“Needless to say, anything done out of anxiety, pride or the need to impress others will not lead to holiness.” (GE 28)
(Pope Francis in Gaudete Et Exsultate)
Archbishop of Bulawayo