AoB/Cir/ 03 2016

Dear Priests, Deacons, Religious and Lay Faithful of the Archdiocese of Bulawayo,

We are in the second half of the Year of Mercy and I am very happy with the intense spiritual exercise that is taking place at individual level, at associations , parish and deanery levels.  We are experiencing  more and more that the Mercy of God is real. This year I have also seen many of our faithful  making lot of sacrifices to be merciful to the less privileged in our communities.  The contribution towards the Lenten campaign  and the donations received in kinds from various parishes is a clear of sign of God’s mercy in our own midst. I am very grateful to you all for this. The hunger situation in our rural communities is quite serious. We are only able to help a very few among the millions who are in need of food aid.

In this Year of Mercy we also need to  pay serious attention to the spiritual hunger we have in our hearts and families.  Our hearts are in need of God’s mercy. Our families need to experience God’s abundant mercy. Let us make a very serious effort towards this. Let us make every effort to receive  the Sacraments of the Church as often as possible. Sacraments are channels of God’s mercy and love. Let us pray earnestly for God’s powerful hand in our daily lives.   

1. Apostolic Exhortation: AMORIS LÆTITIA (Joy of Love in the Family). This apostolic exhortation  by Pope Francis was signed on 19 March 2016.

“This Exhortation is especially timely in this Jubilee Year of Mercy. First, because it represents an invitation to Christian families to value the gifts of marriage and the family, and to persevere in a love strengthened by the virtues of generosity, commitment, fidelity and patience. Second, be­cause it seeks to encourage everyone to be a sign of mercy and closeness wherever family life re­mains imperfect or lacks peace and joy”(AL 5).

2. Feast of St. Mary Magdalene:  Holy Father Pope Francis has made the memorial of Mary Magdalene a feast now. She is called the “apostle of Apostles”.  From this year 22 July will be celebrated as a feast.

3. Priestly Ordination:  Anold  Moyo SJ from Our Lady Queen of Peace, Entumbane will be ordained a priest on 30 July 2016 at the same parish.  He belongs to the Zimbabwe – Mozambique province of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits).

4. Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Fatima:  This will take place from 19 – 21 August. The detailed programme is already sent to all parishes and missions.

5. Pilgrimage to Empandeni:  will take place on 30th September evening to  the morning of 01 October.

6. Congratulations:  We congratulate  Marianhill Missionaries for completing 120 years of their service in Zimbabwe.  May you continue your ministry of evangelization with courage and dedication in the footsteps of your pioneers.

7. Silver Jubilees:

7.1. St. Bernadett’s Parish, Waterford  has completed 25 years of their  existence this year.  We wish them many blessings. All along they only had a hall and a new church is being built  there to honour this occasion.

7.2. Fr. Jerome Nyathi:  will celebrate  his 25th anniversary of priestly ordination  on 15th October.  We wish him many more blessings for his service of the Lord and the Church.

8. World Youth Day: This will take place in Poland from 18 – 23 July 2016.  If everything  goes well there will be 15 youth and Fr. Johanes Maseko from the Archdiocese of Bulawayo taking part in it. We wish them a deep spiritual experience there.

9. Appointments:

9.1. Fr. Gilbert Moyo as spiritual advisor to  St. Joseph’s Association.

9.2. Fr. Jaya Sheelan OFM-Cap   as assistant priest at Our Lady Queen of Peace, Entumabane.

9.3. Fr. Mark Stephen OFM-Cap   as assistant priest at St. Padre Pio, Emakhandeni.

9.4. Fr. Lucky Mandava OMI  as assistant priest at Our Lady of Lourdes, Khumalo.

9.5. Fr. Tapera Muserere SVD  as priest in charge of Holy Spirit Parish, Nkulumane.

10. Golden Jubilee:  Bishop Albert Serrano of Hwange will celebrate his golden jubilee of priestly ordination on 2nd July 2016  at St. Mary’s Parish, Hwange. We  congratulate  and  wish him many blessings.

11. Congratulations: to the Sacred Heart Association on their golden jubilee of foundation in Zimbabwe. Their celebrations will take place at ZITF from 24-26 June 2016.

“Every heart wounded by sin – as each one of us has – must undertake the journey of healing in order to be more like our heavenly Father who is perfect.” (Pope Francis)

+Alex Thomas

Archbishop of Bulawayo

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