LOOK FOR GOD IN POOR AND LOWLY

St. Peter writes in his first letter, “wrap yourselves all in humanity to be servants of each other, because God refuses the proud and will always favour the humble (1 Pet. 5:5),” today as the church we celebrate the feast of St. Mark the Evangelist. We are being reminded in a special way to be humble servants of God. To be a child of God does not guarantee you a simple or easy life but life full of challenges! As the children of God we are at a high risk of loosing the who we are in the process as our enemy who is devil in this case is always prowling round like a roaring lion, let us then be calm but vigilant so says our today’s reading. We are therefore re-sent today from the Gospel “Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation”lets go look for Jesus all over the world and to anyone we meet on the streets and so on.

We have a mission to be accomplished today, that is, to look for God in someone you might consider to be poor and even lowly. Try to get some ways to know that person in a special way or at a deeper level, ask God to show you what you can do to uplift the person. Think about the new lesson you have just learnt from the person, remember in each one of us we see God because we are made in His image and likeness! If you dedicate yourself in doing this God will work with you and confirm the Word you preach by the signs that accompanied it. Nobody said it will be easy but lets continue to be witnesses of the Kingdom! Walk tall and do it, you can do it, not tomorrow nor next month but NOW!!!

God’s blessings upon you!!! Love and peace, go out and challenge the world with the who you are!!!

By Fr. Thembela (mthemngoma@gmail.com)

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OUR HEALING IS IN THE SACRAMENTS!!!

As I was meditating this morning, I came across something I haven’t really noticed, that is, in our spiritual and life as a whole we are only healed with/by the Sacraments. As I went through the reflection of the day from Pope Francis’ daily reflections Edited by Kevin Cotter (2013), I understood it in a different way.

This is how it is put there under the tittle: THE VICTORY OF CHRIST

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The grace contained in the sacraments of Easter is an enormous potential for the renewal of our personal existence, of family life, of social relations.” As we begin this weekend, I invite you, let us ask ourselves if we have seen/realize how special we are to God. We need to change our ways, try and get some means of receiving these special graces from the sacraments more effectively. We need to frequent Reconciliation Sacrament and receive Holy Communion. We should also read spiritual books to receive grace upon grace that on its own will help us indeed strengthen our inner being and longing for God through the Easter Sacraments.

Personally I say this is a must have to those who can be able to get it!!!

By Fr. Thembela (mthemngoma@gmail.com)

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PHILANI  QUEENSTOWN  CATHOLIC  DEVELOPMENT

Philani Queenstown Catholic Development (PQCD) is a faith-based project founded in 2012 in the Diocese of Queenstown. It is under the supervision of Rev. Bishop Dabula Mpako. The purpose of the project is to focus on reaching out to orphans, vulnerable children and ministering to those infected with HIV and AIDS and related diseases. Our aim is to give high quality living to orphans and vulnerable children in the spirit of serving Christ.  By doing this, we are trying to give every child his/her dignity.

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The project pays visit to the families to identify the OVCs, this is touching because they live under the care of grandparents and child-headed household. The biggest challenge is poverty and unemployment. In 2014, we had villages like Bolotwa, McKay’s Nek, Lady Frere, Ilinge, Machibini, Mtebele visited, and food parcels distributed to 150 households. In winter orphans were given blankets to keep them warm. There are also NGOs who receive help from Philani, namely Isibindi from Ilinge and also Rise and Shine from Mtebele.

The project has been funded by the SACBC for the past four years; this charitable act is greatly appreciated. Though no more funding is now available, there is hope that the project will still continue helping the poor.

Short explanation of the project in IsiXhosa. UPhilani Queenstown Catholic Development (PQCD) yiproject esekelwe elukholweni, eyasekwa ngomnyaka  ka 2012 kwidayosisi  yakuKomani.Isebenza phantsi kweliso elibukhali lohloniphekileyo uBishophu Dabula Mpako. Injongo yayo  kukugxila  ekufikeleleni kwiinkedama, nabantwana abasesichengeni nokusebenza nabo bachatshazelwe sisifo sikagawulayo HIVand AIDS  nezifo ezinxulumene naso. Injongo yethu kukuphucula nokunyusa umgangatho wempilo yeenkedama nabantwana abasesichengeni, emoyeni wokukhonza uKristu. Ngokwenza oku, sizama ukunika wonke umntwana isidima sakhe.

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Kule project kuhanjelwa iintsapho, kuhanjelwa aba bantwana, kwaye oku  kuchukumisa kakhulu kuba bahlala noomhakhulu/ tatomkhulu abanye baphethe amakhaya akukho bazali. Owona mceli-mngeni mkhulu yintlupheko nokuswela umsebenzi. Kulo nyaka udlulileyo, 2014 kuhanjelwe iindawo ezizezi- Bolotwa, Mckays Nek,  Lady Frere,  Ilinge, Machibini noMtebele. Kwahanjiswa nokutya kumakhaya  amalunga ne 150 achaphazelekayo. Ebusika abantwana baphiwa iingubo ukuze bafudumale ngexesha lengqele. Kukho  nee  NGOs ezithi zincedwe nguPhilani kwiintswelo zazo,  ISibindi  eLinge,  uRise and Shine  eMtebele nezinye.

 Le project ibifumana inkxaso  kwi Qumrhu loo Bishop bamaKatolike ase Mzantsi Afrika, kule minyaka mine idlulileyo. Sisibulela kakhulu esi senzo sothando nenceba. Nangona lo mthombo utshile nje, sinethemba lokuba le project izakuqhubela phambili ukunceda amahlwempu.

214 We appreciate the good work by our sisters in reaching out to the people of God which is in a way some sort of The New Evangelization! God bless you for your self-dedication in this mission!!!\

By Fr. Thembela (mthemngoma@gmail.com)

THE STATEMENT OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH ON THE RECENT VIOLENT ATTACKS ON FOREIGN NATIONALS.

The Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference has observed with sadness the outburst of xenophobic violence in Durban which the Catholic Archbishop, Cardinal Wilfrid Napier has already condemned.

Our charter, the bible, is very clear “When a foreigner lives with you in your land, don’t take advantage of him. Treat the foreigner the same as a native. Love him like one of your own. Remember that you were once foreigners in Egypt. I am God, your God”. (Leviticus 19:33-34)

We understand the anger that the people may be feeling towards the foreigners for various legitimate reasons.  However, we are a nation of peace; we are a rainbow nation.  We conquered apartheid with very little use of violence and a settlement was reached peacefully.  The same principle of Ubuntu needs to be applied in order to calm the recent spates of violence and unrest.

While we acknowledge that the utterances by His Majesty, the king of the Zulu nation, never meant nor intended this violence, we believe that he should categorically condemn this violence and publicly propagate the value of hospitality entrenched in the Zulu worldview “isisu somhambi asingakanani singangenso yenyoni”.  This would amplify his influence as a peacemaker and a loyal leader of the soil.

We commit ourselves to pray to God for this situation to be resolved and to be available as agents to broker peace. We also commit financial support from the SACBC Foundation for the displaced people.

We urge the foreigners and expatriates to avoid being involved in any unfair labour and illegal business practices.  We also exhort them to expose those who are here illegally and report any criminal elements among them.  This is to be expected of every responsible citizen, both foreign/expatriate and native.

We urge our society to avoid irresponsible use of social media.  Many graphics and verbal postings do very little to change the situation but exacerbate the violence.  Before posting, always ask yourself if it will bring any good or if it will fuel the conflict.

Finally, we urge the government to take leadership in this matter.  Leaders of this violent movement should have been identified and confronted for dialogue and accountability.  Issues that provide a context for this horrible violence need to be addressed immediately.

May all South Africans remember that “whatsoever you do to the least of my brethren, you do it unto me” (Matthew 25:40) and that the Freedom Charter (1955) says “South Africa belongs to all who live in it.”

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Released by : Archbishop William Slattery, the Spokesperson of the SACBC

Enquiries        : Fr S’milo Mngadi, SACBC Communications Officer

Tel : 012 323 6458

Cell: 072 110 8613

YOUTH OF QUEENSTOWN DIOCESE

Fr. T. Matywatywa, the Diocesan Chaplain of the youth in our diocese invites all the young adults of this Diocese to their special celebration of the Year of Consecrated Life.

Date: 25th April 2015

Arrival time: 08h00 

Venue: Christ the King Cathedral

Theme: I have sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them, they will listen to my voice, so there will be one flock and one Shepherd. 

This is in  a way wake up call for young stars. There will be a short program after mass to give a some light to us about the Year itself. Lets give ourselves time to be there and get a clear understanding of what this Year of Consecrated Life is all about. Please be punctual as there will be some other activities after Holy Mass and sports as well.

Wishing you all the best as you prepare yourselves for this special event.

 

By Fr. Thembela (mthemngoma@gmail.com)