My First Easter experience in the Diocese of Queenstown and Whittlesea Pastoral District

He is truly risen, Alleluia!!!!! Here is an experience of our Reverend Deacon Richard Njanje SAC from Whittlesea Pastoral District of this year’s Easter Celebrations. He has this to say:

Easter as it should always come with the Good News that the Lord is risen an the greeting of the day is Alleluia. I have had a number of Easter Celebrations over the years but the one of this year, 2016, was a special one. It was unique for two reasons: it was my first one in the place I assigned to serve, Whittlesea Pastoral District, and secondly it was my first one as the deacon to serve at Easter which gave me an opportunity to baptize 12 children.

After the 40 days (Lenten Season) of the preparation, the Sacred Paschal Triduum which every Catholic was looking forward to finally arrived. It was was quite amazing to see how the faithful, in all the Sacred Paschal Triduum, filled up the St. Gabriel’s Catholic Church at Sada.

Holy Thursday: on this day the church was full with the faithful of all the main STATIONS, Sada, Ekuphumleni and Thornhill together with all the small communities under them. The readings of the day all point to the self-giving and the humility of Christ. On this day we remember in a special way the institution of the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Holy Orders. It is always amazing too think of Christ’s love for humanity. It is in occasions as this that a famous analogy of a pig and a chicken in an egg and bacon business is used in attempt to understand the love of Christ.  It is this love that made Christ to give himself totally – His body and Blood; to humble Himself to the point of washing His disciple’s feet; and giving up His life on Good Friday.

As the day came to and end on friday everyone present was deeply touched with the sad memory of how Christ was crucified, this made everyone present to to be in a deep meditation; contemplating the Passion of Christ. The Easter Joy however covered all the grieving of the Good Friday. Christ the light of the world overcam the darkness of Good Friday. The Easter Vigil celebration started at 19h00 at St. Gabriel, Sada. The church was packed, faces of the people of God filled with the Joy of Easter; singing the song of the victory – the Gloria. The message to take home was ‘Christ is the Light of the world and as followers of Christ we ought to have our lights lit to dispel darkness in the world.’ Each one of us should always as themselves if their Easter light is still lighting.

IMG_2954[1] (2) Deacon Njanje SAC

May the risen Lord bless us and keep us always safe for the Kingdom. Thanks to our Deacon for sharing his experience with us, may God bless you abundantly. HAPPY EASTER TO ALL OF YOU DEAR PEOPLE OF GOD!!!


On the sunny Monday of the 21st March 2016 morning gathered together in our beautiful Christ the King Cathedral in celebrating two precious things at once, that is, the Chrism Mass as well as Human Rights Day. The spirit was excellent from all angles. The attendance was beautiful than last year. Choir excelled in leading us, indeed we experienced what St. Augustine’s says, he who sings prays twice. We felt the spirit of God anew in us.

The main celebrant was the Chief Shepherd of the Diocese, His Lordship Bishop D. A. Mpako as it should. The Bishop welcomed everyone present and their trouble and means to come to this special celebration as there were so many things they could have done on the day. This celebration as we know it gives an opportunity to the Bishop to see his sheep that he shepherds in faith in one venue. It also gives a chance to the faithful to see all the clergy of the diocese together, it excites everyone to partake in Chrism Mass.

In his introduction he mentioned how important for us to take the celebration of the human rights serious. He said we all need to give each other the dignity they deserve. He made all the faithful aware of the letter by the SACBC on Racism. In his homily he focused mostly on three things,
i. The role of priesthood to the people of God.
ii. Year of Mercy to everyone and
iii. Church internal politics.
He appreciated the work the priests do in different parishes and mission stations, he made us understand that without his priests his mission will not be achieved in this diocese. He reminded the priests of their primary role which will make their ministry effective on their mission stations. To be there for their parishioners especially when they have lost their loved ones, visit the sick, administer sacraments, be available to celebrate masses with the people of God. He encouraged his priests to be servants and not to expect to be served.
He challenged the priests to be merciful like our Father, by forgiving and not condemning the people of God, to be humble priests than arrogant, to be selfless than glorified. He mentioned at the same time that he is very much impressed with the feedback he gets from the various parishes about how priests dedicate themselves in serving the people, their time to listen to the peoples challenges, their time and also physical presence to give support to the people.
In his homily he also reminded the people of God of their role to pray for their priests as their are not angels among them. He asked the people not to ask for extra-ordinary things from the priests but support him especially the moral support. He encouraged priests to be punctual for celebrations at their respective parishes.

He emphasized that parishioners should work hand in hand with their priests. They should be strong in faith, support the priest and make it a point that they use all the structures they have at their parishes than taking them to him. The oils were blessed, the national anthem was also sung before the final blessing to show that we understand what was celebrated nationally. All clergies and religious were invited for a finger lunch by the Administrator The Very Rev. Fr. S. Vanqa SAC





 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.” (Luke 4:18-19)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

We need to have a candid conversation on racism and its manifestations in order to adequately and seriously address racism and racial divisions in our country.

We realise that this is not an easy conversation, one that many of us may prefer to avoid. Our invitation to such a dialogue may in itself evoke a range of emotions, including self-justification and self-righteous feelings; or, guilt and denial; on the other hand, feelings of anger and sadness.  Dialogue, rational and respectful, is necessary so that we open ourselves to receive God’s healing.

The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others was something which St. Peter and the early Church overcame through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. “Truly I now perceive that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.” (Acts 10:34-35)

Our invitation to become part of this dialogue comes from a realisation that the Holy Spirit calls us as a country to be healed; to build and develop relationships of equality, dignity and mutual respect.

In this third decade after gaining our democratic freedom and rights,

  • We need to address the issues of our social trauma as a country which result from the violence of centuries of colonialism and the violent decades of apartheid. We need to dialogue and work together to achieve healing as a nation.
  • We need to acknowledge the link between race, power and privilege.
  • We need to redress urgently the economic inequalities present in our society as a result of past racial discriminatory laws and practices; to allay unfounded fears and promotes justice.

Our responsibilities within the Church

In this Jubilee Year of Mercy, as Church in Southern Africa, we commit ourselves to a credible and comprehensive conversation on racism. This will mean acknowledging the presence of racism in the Church before and during the apartheid era and in these years of democracy. In humility, as St. Peter confessed, we your pastors prostrate before God and before all who are in pain, ask for forgiveness for our historic complicity with racism in the Church.

As we seek God’s mercy that comes with the Jubilee of Mercy, we challenge ourselves as your pastors and we call upon all the faithful and all people of goodwill to do all in our power to address the problem of racism in our society and in the Church. To this effect, our Conference will be adopting a process to be used in small group reflection in our dioceses and parishes engaging all in dealing with the issues of racism.

Furthermore, we encourage this open dialogue at the level of our parishes, availing parishioners of the opportunity to look at how people can grow in positive appreciation of cultural diversity and how this is expressed in the liturgy and other activities of the parish. Our experience of the Gospel call us to rejoice in diversity, to become more culturally inclusive and more enthusiastic in our appreciation of God’s gift of racial diversity. This leads us to appreciate that in our parishes, in our religious communities and in our dioceses, the glory of the body of Christ is enriched and mediated through the various rich cultural, social economic contributions that each race and all ethnic groups contribute from their basket of traditions and social identities.

Through our celebration of the Eucharist, the symbol of unity in the body of Christ, we ask the Lord to heal and transform the relationships in our dioceses and our parishes so that we become communities of faith where there is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female.” (Galatians 3: 28).

Personal responsibility of each

If we want our conversion to contribute to the building of a South Africa freed from racism, we must strive to lead lives worthy of the Gospel (cf. Phil. 1.27; Eph. 4.1), refrain from loving only people who are just like ourselves.  In loving only those who share our racial and ethnic backgrounds, we fall short of fulfilling the demands of love which the Gospel calls for. The words of our Lord challenge us that if we greet only our brothers and sisters, “what more are you doing than others? Do not even the non-believers do the same?”  (Matthew 5: 47)

While reaching out to one another, in open and honest dialogue, the sacrament of Reconciliation becomes especially important and meaningful because through it we come in our sinfulness to our all merciful Father for healing and forgiveness.

A call to prayer

The task of reconciliation therefore requires watchfulness and ardent prayer on the part of each. In this Jubilee Year of Mercy, we ask all parish priests and parishioners to commit themselves to a parish campaign to overcome racism, e.g. a parish prayer campaign or a family prayer, special days of prayer and fasting, co-operating with other parishes across racial lines and working with organisations promoting the dismantling of racism. We ask each parish to organise and commit themselves to do this.

May the Lord of Peace grant our nation the peace, the healing and the reconciliation that we seek. (cf. 2 Th. 3.16).


Archbishop Stephen Brislin

President of Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference

We Pray and also Socialize!!!

As we have it on our church calendar the 22nd January is a special day for St. Vincent, Deacon and Martyr. Our Pallotine brothers and fathers celebrated this special day on Monday the 25th together with the Conversion of St Paul Feast. The Pallotines formerly known as the “Society of the Catholic Apostolate” SAC celebrate this day yearly in our diocese. They come together in prayer to remind themselves of their founder. As we know he was had an intense devotion to the Holy Trinity and to the Blessed Virgin Mary to the extent of being considered a saint by his contemporaries in his life. He was proclaimed blessed by Pope Pius XII on the 22nd January 1850 and canonized by Pope John XXIII in 1963. He was named the principal patron of the Pontifical Missionary Union of Clergy on the 6th April 1963.

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It was such a beautiful day on Monday, we started with Holy Eucharist celebrated by Fr. Reabow SAC one of the senior priests in our diocese and Pallotine community. Mass was so uplifting as Fr. shared with us his experiences since the time he joined the religious life. He mentioned to us that, there was no time that he felt he was on his own as a religious because of the love he draws from St. Vincent Palloti each day. He emphasized on the community life and encouraged us to be a living gospel like Palloti did during his time.

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We were also encouraged to do works of mercy especially this year.

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It was indeed a beautiful day to almost everyone who was there. Special thanks goes to the laity who left everything and grace this day with their presence and sang nicely at Mass. All the best to our Pallotine Brothers and Fathers.

Confirmation and Opening of Grotto: St. Vincent Palloti Parish-Ezibeleni

It was a sunny with a beautiful weather day when the Ezibeleni/Ilinge District come together in great celebration. Since the 31st January 2016, St. Vincent Palloti Parish will never be the same. The celebration started with Holy Mass led by the Chief Shepherd of our Diocese, His Lordship Bishop D. Mpako who welcomed everyone at the beginning of Mass as he usually do. He thanked God in a special way for having brought everyone to this new year still with the gift of faith which is our strength as believers. He also thanked Him for the gift of the people who were to be confirmed in His church to be true witness of Christ through words and actions.


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In his homily he reminded everyone of their calling to be Christians and also their responsibilities which are not very easy. Together with those who were confirmed he also reminded the people of God that in confirmation we are transformed into being prophets. As we know it, a prophet is a person who foresees things. He sees all sorts of things that other people cannot see, he reflected on this in a different way saying, we show the prophetic mission by the way we live the Gospel. Our Christian lifestyle is the one that shows our desire to do God’s will.

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He furthermore,   described the prophet as the one who always wants to know what God wants of them. He mentioned also that one cannot be a Christian if they are not prophet. As much as it is not easy to be a prophet but we should persevere. People will forever challenge you if you see things in a different way and they will go to the extent of neglecting you and also call you names. We need at all times to fulfill the Christian calling of being prophets and do as the spirit directs us. He gave a fatherly advice that self introspection is very important. Know yourself, identify your mistakes, be able to forgive yourself and use the faith you got in confirmation as a took to help others grow spiritually and otherwise. 

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Candidates for confirmation received their special grace, Mass continued as usual after which the congregation proceeded to the beautiful newly built Grotto where there was a special celebration for its blessing. His Lordship thanked all those who supported the idea of the Grotto, those who funded the project itself and their priest in charge Rev. Fr. Mlungisi Emmanuel Maphumulo for such an achievement.  

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