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“VICTIMS HAVE A RIGHT TO TRUTH AND JUSTICE” Pope Benedict’s summing up of the Second African Bishops’ Synod 2009, “ Africae Munus” (“Africa’s Task”) he dialogue between (historically hardly a peaceful unities as well as between C h r i s t i a n i t y a n d place!) to get academic degrees peoples and nations. t r a d i t i o n a l A f r i c a n in ‘peace studies’. But will Pope Benedict’s entire thinking cultures and cults was until not diplomatic skills and the is centred on love and truth. If so long ago the main concern of technical ability to balance reconciliation is an act of love it the continent’s pastors and conflicting interests alone bring must go together with truth. God theologians. The Pope confirms an end to bloody conflicts? Has is love and He is light and truth. the importance of inculturation. this not been tried countless Love and truth are inseparable. “It is imperative….to transmit times in the past, and yet there is the values that the Creator has no end to armed conflicts, Revealing the truth, facing up to instilled in the hearts of genocide and bitter ethnic it, accepting it can be painful. Truth, and the guilt revealed by Africans since the dawn of strife? truth, is only bearable because time”(38). There is common ground. There are words and The African Bishops said Christ has already ‘carried away symbols ready to receive the already in 2009, and Pope the sin of the world’ and has the Spirit of Christ and express his B e n e d i c t q u o t e s t h e m power to forgive. But he has little approvingly, “Reconciliation is to say to the one who does not see meaning for Africa . a pre-political concept and a his sin and will not face up to the Pope Benedict thinks also of the pre-political reality, and for this truth of his life and sees no need “world of contemporary reason it is of the greatest African culture” which needs to importance for the task of for being forgiven. be “evangelized”. He recomm- politics itself. Unless the power The Synod Fathers of 2009, our ends a “serious study of of reconciliation is created in African Bishops, and Pope traditional African reco- people’s hearts, political Benedict concur in one thing: nciliation ceremonies in order commitment to peace lacks its “Reconciliation has to be acto evaluate their positive inner premise….This pu- companied by a courageous and aspects and their limitations.” rification and inner de- honest act: the pursuit of those Nothing can ever be a substitute v e l o p m e n t t o w a rd s t r u e responsible for these conflicts, for Christ, but culture may help humanity cannot exist without those who commissioned crimes God” (19). to give him an African face. and who were involved in trafficking of all kinds, and the “Reconciliation, justice and Peace is found in the heart open peace” was the theme of the to Christ and His Spirit. Christ d e t e r m i n a t i o n o f t h e i r Synod of 2009. The Church in practised what he preached, responsibility. Victims have a Africa is no longer concerned “love of enemy” (Mt. 5: 44). He right to truth and justice. It is only with the culture and cult of died praying for his killers. In important for the present and for the past, but deals with today, this way he overcame all enmity the future to purify memories, so and therefore inevitably also (Eph. 2: 14). That is the spiritual as to build a better society where with war and genocide, root of making peace. That is such tragedies are no longer violence and strife. where we must start. It is more repeated” (21). than striking a bargain at a She asks what Christ has to say conference table or a political The Church is learning this to this Africa. Zimbabwe with poker game. This inner event, in herself painfully at present, as her history of violence and the heart, is what is meant by abuse is discovered committed bitter interracial strife and “pre-political”. No lasting by her own trusted pastors and ethnic conflict is waiting for the political solution can be found right response too. without the Spirit acting in the consecrated persons. She and her members have to repent and be hearts of people. Some of our brightest young This applies to making peace transformed before demanding the same of the world at large. people have gone off to Europe within families and comm-
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CONTENTS EDITORIAL “Victims Have a Right To Truth and Justice” ................................................2 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR ............................................................................4
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POPE’S LETTER TO AFRICA “Respect the People’s Political Decisions” ................................................5 Marko Phiri Women’s Place and Role in the Church ........................................................7 Francisca Mandeya Africa’s Youth to Shape their own Future.....................................................9 Gift Mambipiri “Sharing in God’s Creative Power”.............................................................11 Fr Oskar Wermter S.J LITURGY A Presentation of the New English Missal..................................................13 Fr Joseph Mahlahla “And With your Spirit”.................................................................................15 Fr Peter Chimombe Who Has The Last Word in Translations?...................................................16 BOOK REVIEWS Living With the War Vets..............................................................................18 The Giant who Stood up For The Little People............................................19 Fr Tony Bex S.J Against All Odds..........................................................................................22 Gift Mambipiri Working in the Valley of Death.....................................................................25 Gift Mambipiri Back To The Archives..................................................................................26 Fr Oskar Wermter S.J
Editorial office: JesCom, 1 Churchill Avenue, Alexandra Park, Harare, P O Box A949,Avondale, Harare, Zimbabwe. Tel. 263-4-744571, 744288, 0713-419453, Fax : 263-4-744284 After hours : Tel/Fax 263-4-2910233 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, websites: www.jesuits.co.zw, www.jescom.co.zw.
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POEM In The Midst of Darkness.............................................................................28 Admire Rufaro Nhika S.J
Editorial Committee Fr Oskar Wermter SJ (Chairman),Frs Chiedza ChimhandaSJ,Dominic Tomuseni SJ,Sr Marceline Mudambo, H.L.M.C, Peter Zawi (Silveria House), Gift Mambipiri (Secretary) Readers may contribute to the production costs by cheque or cash.Articles with full names of their authors do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board
Vision Statement Mukai-Vukani (“Rise) Jesuit Journal for Zimbabwe serves as a Bulletin for Theological Reflection among Jesuits in Zimbabwe and their friends. It tries to help us answer the question, “What direction do we have to follow in the light of the Word of God at this moment in time?” (Mukai 23, p.2), facilitating dialogue among Jesuits and their friends based on study, prayer and discernment.
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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR We welcome letters from our readers responding to articles published in this journal. We ask readers to be brief and to the point. We reserve the right to shorten them. Readers may express their disagreement and present their own views and insights, but always with respect for those who have different convictions and with tolerance. We asks letter writers not to use offensive language, insult or ridicule other churches or writers with whom they disagree.
“Neither Male nor Female” Dear Editor The issue of Mukai- Vukani No. 58 of October 2011, “The Church Holy and Yet Sinful” contained a very interesting article, “Ministers for the Church” by Fr. Luigi Cleric SMB. The article dealt, though not conclusively, with the important issues of mandatory celibacy and the question of the ordination of women. I am convinced that there should be no question on the ordination of female priests. Why not? I’m sure you are aware of the new movement in Saudi Arabia that has resulted in them being allowed to vote and drive cars for the first time. Though this has called for celebrations globally,
this exposed the nature of oppressive systems that discriminate women for nothing more than who they are, females. The Church is pointing fingers at traditional systems, particularly African political systems, but she is discriminating herself. God sanctioned the equality between men and women. Discrimination against women on the basis of sex and gender is a SIN. Gender based discrimination is no less than racism and it undermines the love and grace of God. It is a sin against GOD, SELF and CONSCIENCE. Jesus calls on every one to share with him his kingdom. “There is neither Jew nor Greek, neither slave nor master, neither MALE
The Perspective of the Victims Dear Editor There is much food for reflection in the issue on “The Church, Holy and yet Sinful”. The article entitled “Abuse: diagnosis and therapy” needs a bit of comment. Arguing from the lack of evidence is never very sound. Before we accept that the level of abuse was lower before Vatican II, we would need to know how that conclusion was reached. Since evidence for the years since 1960 is based mainly on the testimony of victims, we would have expected less evidence from earlier years, since less victims would be still alive and few, if any, perpetrators of abuse against children in that period are still in
NOR FEMALE; for you are all one in Jesus Christ”(Galatians 3:28). Lastly the title of the issue, “The Church Holy Yet Sinful” is in my view wrong. The Church cannot be holy if it is responsible for unholy acts. Holiness is not a product of religious ceremonies or mass or sacraments only but holy acts, speech and conscience. It is my hope that the leaders of the Catholic Church see the light of Jesus Christ and honestly address the issue of female ordination and mandatory celibacy of priests. Zvikomborero Butler Kapumha Upper 6 student, St. Ignatius College, 2011 (Zvikomborero is not a Catholic; he presents his personal views).
Frogs and Chameleons
the land of the living. Arguments based on the conclusions from dubious evidence can hardly stand. In any case, the whole argument risks becoming a red herring to distract us from the biggest scandal, which was and in some cases still is, the hushing up of offences and protection of offenders by ecclesiastical authorities. The arguments for this hush-up that we have heard advanced by those in authority seem to have more to do with the reputation of the church than compassion for the offender.
Dear Editor, How can one describe the faith that a Zimbabwean Catholic has? Frogs and Chameleons live on land and in water. The modern day Catholic seems to be more like these creatures. Praying the rosary in the morning and shouting slogans of political parties in the evening. How many times have Catholics been abused by the chosen Political Party Presidents? They are taught to hate, even kill their kin for the love of patronage! Shun being used by party politicians but embrace the Love from Above!
Brian MacGarry SJ Mbare/Harare
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“Respect the People’s Political Decisions” By Marko Phiri, Bulawayo
and economic, assume that they owe nothing to anyone other than themselves. They are concerned only with their rights, and they often have great difficulty in taking responsibility for their own and o t h e r p e o p l e ’s i n t e g r a l development.
As Zimbabwe heads for polls in the not so distant future with some political gladiators insisting they should be held this year, issues that have plagued the country as far back as the 1980s take centre stage, and like any political contests, these will define the political manifestos of the contesting parties and personalities. From good governance that has been a major motif in the body of work that has emerged post-2000, to migration as Zimbabweans settle elsewhere in their millions as economic refugees, to justice and peace, reconciliation, these are issues of great relevance since the formation of the coalition government which failed to stem human rights abuses. No doubt in a mature democracy these are issues that would rally the voters to choose a government that respects their values, yet as history has shown in Zimbabwe, this has never been a strong base to enable the electorate to define and chart their own political course. It is before that background that Pope Benedict’s “On the Church in Africa in service to reconciliation, justice and peace” finds resonance. It is a document that attempts to define what I would call a moral map for Africa. It stems from the Second African Synod of Bishops: the Pope raises issues to do with good governance, and as Zimbabwe heads for polls, Benedict brings to attention a concern that has plagued us for years now: “By way of example, elections represent a platform for the expression of a people’s political
Marko Phiri decisions, and they are a sign of legitimacy for the exercise of power. They provide a privileged opportunity for healthy and serene public political debate, marked by respect for different opinions and different political groupings. If conducted well, elections call forth and encourage real and active participation by citizens in political and social life. Failure to respect the national constitution, the law or the outcome of the vote, when elections have been free, fair and transparent, would signal a grave failure in governance and a lack of competence in the administration of public affairs (81).” We then ask ourselves as Zimbabweans if these coming elections are indeed an opportunity to freely express our own “political decisions,” whether this is yet another moment of false hopes knowing the public position of the very bellicose service chiefs who mentally still fight the 1970s war of liberation from white minority rule, “promising” they are ready to reverse the people’s political decisions if the election result does not favour Zanu (PF). It as the Pope writes that: “Today, many decision makers, both political
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Hence it is important to call for a renewed reflection on how rights presuppose duties, if they are not to become mere licence” (82). For a long time that’s exactly what has defined local politics and there has never been any real connection between the electorate and the politicians as imagined by Abraham Lincoln’s famous definition of democracy. Instead we have politicians who have a culture ingrained in them that people owe them something and this has been made loud and clear by the continued stripping of the country’s natural resources by the political elites solely based on the claim that “we died for this country.” Elsewhere, the Pope raises concerns about migration, which itself has in the past decade or so been a major talking point here in Zimbabwe and indeed abroad as it came to define the political and economic crisis authored by the same people who claim to be engaged in a fight for a greater good, but still deny Zimbabweans scattered across the globe their franchise. Pope Benedict observes that the displacement of people across Africa “reveals the hidden magnitude of the different types of poverty produced by deficiencies in public administration,” (84) and very unfortunately for us, this has come to define our very existence as Zimbabweans which can now
POPE’S LETTER TO AFRICA virtually be found anywhere you can imagine under the sun. I read with utter surprise a few years ago about a female Zimbabwean school teacher who had found new life as a domestic servant in Israel! And all these circumstances about Zimbabwean migrants have a common factor in that all these people have miserable stories to tell, and one just has to imagine the culture shock for anyone finding themselves right in the middle of one of the world’s trouble spots having to live with the fear of everyday violence and bloodshed. It all leads us back to the concerns raised in “On the Church in Africa in service to reconciliation, justice and peace,” and how African governments have been very complicit in destroying the lives “of their people”: “Migration inside and outside the continent thus becomes a complex drama which
Free to speak, free to choose seriously affects Africa’s human capital, leading to the destabilization or destruction of families” (84). It has historically become a great tragedy for African politic that when you have elections, these issues Pope Benedict XVI raises are never a
reason for unpopular governments to be booted out but rather these political bullies mysteriously claim they are still relevant to national politics. Marko Phiri is a journalist and writer based in Bulawayo
Dear Reader, Many thanks to readers who have responded to our appeal for donations to meet our financial crisis. We used to rely on a reliable source which kept us going even without charging for this inhouse publication. The global financial crisis has changed all that. The local beneficiaries of our work need to make a contribution first, before we can approach and ask for support from foreign donors. If we ourselves locally have done what we could then we can ask fellow Christians elsewhere to come in and provide the rest. That is fair enough, isn’t it? During Lent we are happy to meet at least some of our readers and subscribers at the four Lenten Lectures which we have arranged with Arrupe College. The editorial staff is happy to meet you personally and hear from you what you think of Mukai-Vukani and what you would like it should look like in the future. For this purpose we are also conducting a survey. Questionnaires have been sent out by e-mail and in hard-copy – this edition contains copies as inserts – so you can express your thoughts and feelings. We are happy about the number of replies we have received, and we hope for more. They will be read and studied carefully, and will be taken into account as we plan for the future. This edition which we hope reaches you before EASTER is focussing on the “Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Benedict xvi – On the Church in Africa in Service to Reconciliation, Justice and Peace” in which the Holy Father sums up the Second African Synod of Bishops of 2009 while adding his own insights. We are also discussing in three contributions the New English Missal, introduced in Zimbabwe on the First Sunday of Advent 2011. Perhaps of greater interest to us in Zimbabwe is the translation of liturgical texts into our local languages. Who has the final authority in deciding about liturgical texts in our mother tongues? The answer may surprise you. We hope you like our book reviews. If you happen to have read books we are reviewing already and disagree with our evaluation, let us know. Letters-to-the-Editor are always welcome. – The Editor
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Women’s Place and Role in the Church Women to preserve our humanity Pope Benedict XVI quotes Pope John Paul 11 as saying , ‘the woman is the one in whom the order of love in the created world of persons takes first root’. Women have a huge responsibility to nurture life. Pope John Paul also stated that ‘the fact that God chose a woman, the Virgin Mary, to play such an important role in the world’s salvation leaves little doubt about the God-given dignity of women’. Pope John Paul taught that ‘the differences between the sexes are part of God’s plan for creation - not social constructs- and that church and society benefit when the gifts of both are recognized’. Gender, which consists in the socially assigned roles of men and women, boys and girls, learnt through the process of socialization, is distinct from sex. Often women’s multiple roles are glorified by society without giving them recognition for the burdens they carry. They face a peculiar poverty, shortage of time, as a result of multitasking, they assume the nurturing roles but their work is not valued. Compared to men women have less time for their own development, be it their career, education or positions at work. A girl asked by her male classmates to sweep the classroom screamed, “I was not born with a broom in my hand!” The gist of her outburst was that boys can also sweep, proving that the role of a woman in this sense is not fixed. Unlike the complimentarity of men and women which is biological and factual because of sex, gender roles can be exchanged. Cooking, sweeping, changing diapers, bathing the baby and feeding with
hindered her from being with her family at church. The husband took up roles that risked him being laughed at ( that he has been given a love portion) but did not care what people said. He was bonding with his baby. This man proves that men can take up roles that society deems women’s and enjoy a family life where the work load is shared and opportunities for women to develop are made available, and quality time is also created. Francisca Mandeya
solid foods is not uniquely a woman’s duty, it can be shared. Breast feeding cannot be switched; (because of their uniqueness women produce breastmilk and men do not). Pope Benedict XVI insists that “we must recognize, then affirm and defend equal dignity of man and woman, they are both persons, utterly unique among all the living beings found in the world.” A middle-aged man I used to attend Mass with at the Sacred Heart Cathedral would occupy the back part of the church. You would see him with feeding bottles, a cradle, with the baby sometimes strapped on his chest, and he would ensure that the baby is not making noise, is well fed and her diapers were dry. I only saw the wife of the man in question when we both changed parishes to Our Lady of the Assumption and realized that the man was not widowed. The woman was probably studying or had work commitments that
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Perhaps church marriage counsellors could help couples to see the benefits of sharing chores. That way the Church contributes to the liberation of women. Gender is deconstructed by proving that one is not less of a man for assuming roles that lessen his wife’s burden at the same time giving him a chance to experience bonding with their infant child. One way of expressing love is to be sensitive to the needs of one’s partner. The Church therefore should be seen as a pillar to lean on for socializing boys and young men into loving responsible fathers who will not use ‘culture’ to oppress their spouses. Oppressive cultures perpetuate oppression through using the Bible out of context to subdue women. Women or ‘dear daughters of the Church’ as Pope Benedict the XVI said, are encouraged to ‘sit at the school of Christ like Mary of Bethany and learn to recognise his word’. The discernment to engage in various women’s projects will come from knowledge of the h ’s s o c i a l t e a c h i n g a n d
POPE’S LETTER TO AFRICA principles that will help women to be true disciples. The Catechism (p.419) states that ‘the equality of men rests essentially on their dignity as persons and rights that flow from it. Every form of social or cultural discrimination in fundamental personal rights on the ground of sex, race, colour, social conditions, language or religion must be curbed and eradicated as incompatible with God’s design’. While decrying discrimination against women and urging their promotion in all spheres of community and social life, the Pope unequivocally reaffirmed the teaching that the Church cannot ordain women to the priesthood and closed the ordination debate in the Catholic Church. Equality is viewed in gender studies as availing equal opportunities in decision making positions for example women in parliament or women presidents, which the world seems not to be ready to embrace, including women themselves. Perhaps the Church could consider opening the debate to make people understand its position on ordination which seems as if it is discriminatory and yet according to Pope John Paul II, ‘the all-male priesthood does not represent discrimination against women, but fidelity to Christ’s actions and his plan for the Church.’ Perhaps a deeper explanation of ‘equal but different’ could be given to make some Catholic women understand, in light of the changing culture where women have taken positions of leadership. Even in the Catholic Church itself, women Eucharistic Ministers can be seen administering the Eucharist, something which was unheard of in the past. Feminine gifts of ‘sympathetic love, friendly and thoughtful demeanor and mercy’, which women are revered for having a
Women working in the background wealth of, could also be transferred to boy children through the process of socialisation. While women are closer to children, the socialisation process will need male co-operation. Masculinity should be a subject that the Church discusses so that men do not get away with being cruel, starting wars to show their masculinity only for women to bear the brunt of such selfishness. Pope Benedict XV1 says “the church has the duty to contribute to the recognition and liberation of women following the example of Christ’s own esteem for them.” The liberation of woman can only truly happen in partnership with men who have to take an active role in women’s liberation by understanding and sharing women’s burdens, providing them opportunities to realise their full potential.In the Church women are viewed as
helpers required to ‘carry on the gospel tradition of women who assisted Jesus and the apostles, Luke 8: 2 - 3.’ Women are deemed ‘the backbone in local churches’ as their active presence and organizations as well as numbers offer great support to the apostolate (Pope Benedict XVI, 2012). Pope Benedict XVI (2012) says ‘the Church and society need women to take their full place in the world so that the human race can live in the world without completely losing its humanity’. The special role of women therefore needs to be fully understood in the Catholic context and it is through dialogue that such understanding will develop. Francisca Mandeya, mother of three children, is working in civic education.
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Africa’s Youth to Shape their own Future Pope Benedict addressing the young It always gives great pleasure to meet with friends you last saw a year or more ago when you were all still in the youth guild at your local parish, or secondary school. The meetings could be by chance, in the supermarket, in a lift, or at a social gathering. Or even on Facebook. And the nostalgia as you discuss the good old days often shows itself on bright smiling faces. But often such meetings do not end without bad news like: “I am no longer a Catholic” or “So and so is now with this new church.” It is not often that old people leave the Church, or move out of Africa generally, because they are looking for something new. These movements are frequent, however, amongst the youth (14 – 35 years), and Pope Benedict did well in his letter to Africa (Africa Munus) to locate the cause of this. “Youth is a time of genuine and irrepressible questions about the meaning of life and the direction life should take (61).” It is often when there are no answers to the “genuine and irrepressible questions”, or at least deliberate attempts at answering, that young people feel frustrated and rejected, resulting in the movement from one Church, or country, to the other. Reading through the Pope’s letter, one feels both happy and sad at the same time. Happy because at least there is a genuine appreciation that young people are often at crossroads and would need careful handling at certain stages to help
Gift Mambipiri them have a fulfilling life. And sad because the solutions offered do not go far enough in meeting the needs of “young people [who] make up the majority of Africa’s population (60).” There are a number of positive points in the document the Pope signed in Benin at the end of 2011 as an official response to what the bishops deliberated on in 2009 at the Synod of African Bishops. The first is the unequivocal expression that only God can give a true answer to the ‘genuine and irrepressible questions’ that the youth often have (60). There is an encouragement that the youth must be helped to seek answers in the Gospel through Jesus who is a true friend. This has to be done through prayer, but also through the study of Scripture, frequent recourse to the Sacraments, formation in the Church’s social teaching and e ff e c t i v e p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n
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The second positive point is made to teachers of the youth that they be ideal witnesses of Christ to set good examples for the youth. For the youth are formed not only by what they read but by what they see their elders do. As observed by the Zimbabwean bishops in 2008, if young people grow up seeing their elders using hate speech, beating one other and corruptly amassing wealth, they are most likely to reproduce that in society as they grow. There is also a call to involve young people directly in the life of society and of the Church, “so that they do not fall prey to feelings of frustration and rejection in the face of their inability to shape their own future (62).” To the Church, the call is: ‘ Let us have the youth contributing in parish council meetings, let them participate not only as flower girls and altar boys in liturgical celebrations.’ The two broad misgivings one might have with the treatment of the youth in the papal message to Africa are, firstly, that the message seems generalized for a global youth and not streamlined for the youth in Africa. African youth are beset by unique challenges. The Popes response which, summarized in two lines to the youth is, ‘seek the kingdom of God first and answers shall follow’, and secondly, ‘give the youth space to participate and
POPE’S LETTER TO AFRICA they will be happy’ are not enough for the unique challenges that confront Africa. These challenges are poverty, disease, inequality, culture, o p p r e s s i o n , g e n d e r, b a d governance and incessant wars and corruption. The second misgiving is that the Bishops Synod in 2009 went further than the Pope in discussing and creating concrete responses to the problems facing the youth on the continent, as seen in their propositions. One such key proposition, which missed the plane from Rome to Benin, calls on African states to institute trauma and rehabilitation centres for traumatized youths who include child-soldiers, abused young people and those suffering from drug-dependency. Speaking on the occasion of the Day of the African Child in 2011, the Secretary General of the United Nations singled out emotional abuse as a major challenge confronting the African youth and this proposition by the Synod fathers –which was informed by the situation of child soldiers in Somalia, Eastern Congo and the “green bombers’ in Zimbabwe was spot on. Accepting that material poverty is at the centre of the problems the youth face, the Synod had called for the states and the Church to work hand in glove and provide resources and centres to teach professional skills and give human formation. Whilst material poverty on its own can breed all kinds of uncanny survival strategies amongst the youth, idleness is equally dangerous. “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop”. The training in professional skills advocated by the Synod was meant to make the youth eligible either at work places or as agents who can start
Young Jesuits with a message their own businesses using the acquired skills. The call here also asks African stakeholders to prioritise the creation of jobs for youth. African countries like Zimbabwe and Tunisia take pride in their high educational standards. This shows normally in boastful statements of having about 90% literacy rates, and universities that produce annually many graduates. But we often forget to ask weather this type of education is sufficient, useful to the nation and able to assist all our youths? The synod fathers had proposed a national education system that is open even to less gifted individuals so as to provide opportunities for all. If we could model our education to accommodate many, including the academically less gifted, we create space for many more to participate in national economies. This way, we get rid of potential causes of frustration and dejection normally associated with unemployed youths. Last but not least, amongst the
thoughts that failed to survive the time lapse between October 2009, when the Synod took place, and November 2011, when the Pope’s official response came, is the avocation by the bishops that research by the young people themselves be a key instrument in analyzing their problems. The involvement of the youth in this research was to make sure they don’t feel frustration and rejection in the face of their inability to shape their own future. More often than not, some people speak and decide for the youth, leaving the youth only room to implement what would have been recommended. The bishops had said the youth ought to be part of problem identification and solving, by undertaking “a study by diocesan and parish youth commissions of the problems and challenges facing the youth (proposition 48 ).” Gift Mambipiri is a graduate of MSU, Coordinator for National Movement of Catholic Students, now working as editorial assistant for Mukai-Vukani at Jesuit Communications.
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“Sharing in God’s Creative Power” By Oskar Wermter SJ “God made the world as a thing of great beauty for Adam, so that he could work in it and be its steward. Such an understanding results in the full conviction that man is realised through assiduous work , done well (cf. Job 5: 7) and sharing in God’s c r e a t i v e p o w e r, ” s a i d t h e preparatory document (Lineamenta, 2006) for the Second African Bishops’ Synod 2009 . “What is the root of poverty in Africa? Is not work approached with insufficient enthusiasm to compete with others who make a real cult out of work?” These thoughts, unfortunately, were ignored by the Synod. We do not find them in the 57 propositions which the Bishops of Africa produced as “raw material” for the Pope’s exhortation. Pope Benedict, however, reminds men that “Jesus Christ gave an eminent dignity to labour by the wok of his own hands at Nazareth” (Africae Munus, Apostolic Exhortation 2012). “Work can be a very positive setting for personal development and not primarily a means of making profit. Your work enables you to participate in the work of creation and to serve your brothers and sisters”. Without work a people cannot be “the principal agents of its own economic and social progress”.
songs. It was a great day. A few days later a few young local artists brought me an oil painting depicting the event in brilliant colours. I was impressed, indeed very happy about their creative response to our great day, and I said so. They beamed with pleasure. They were happy too. Happy about having created, produced something for our enjoyment and pleasure. That is what I mean by the joy of work. A nurse who sees a patient whom she has nursed over several weeks leave the hospital and go home – is she not happy that the woman she saw writhing with pain is now smiling and relaxed, ready to return to her family? Does she not feel at such a moment that the labour and toil of being a nursing sister is worth it, that such moments are its rewards? A carpenter looks proudly at the tables and chairs he has made
When I see unemployed youth hanging around street corners, I feel deep regret, it makes me very sad. Life is withholding from these young men the joy of work. Joy of work? ‘Work is toil and drudgery, a heavy burden and a curse! ‘ Recently we had a joyful parish event, a celebration full of laughter and fun. We had visitors from Chikurubi of all places, convicts – men and women – singing us their
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with his own hands, a housewife is happy when her guests compliment her for the fine meal she had cooked for them, a writer receives the first copy of his new book as if it were a new baby. Is it not a special joy to eat the mealie cobs, the potatoes and vegetables you have grown yourself in your own garden? The woman who has gone “down south” to look for work may not particularly enjoy her work as a domestic for people she does not know. But the thought that her meagre wages will send her little daughter to school warms her hearts Love for her child makes it all worthwhile. Women in blue work suits cross the street from the tobacco auction floors to our township. Sorting tobacco leaves is unpleasant, unhealthy work. But it puts sadza on the table and
Our greatest need: work
POPE’S LETTER TO AFRICA stops the hunger of the little ones. If they had a choice they would choose some other work, but for love of the family they carry on, dreading the day when this seasonal job comes to an end. The tragedy of our country is that so many, especially those at the very top, have only one desire, to accumulate wealth, never mind how. They feel no shame grabbing properties not their own, which to develop they have not lifted a little finger, laying their hands on treasures they have not produced. Poor people in all their luxury: they have never felt the joy of producing something with their own hands and minds. Only productive and creative people can feel the pride of being able to be the “principal agents of their economic and social progress” (Benedict XVI). The joy of a good leader should be, not that he has enriched himself, but has improved the lives of the people as a whole. This is not done by hand-outs and bribes, but by releasing the energies of the people and giving them work opportunities. Sometimes the tragedy is that, even if you employ young people, they do not use the chance since they were always abused as street fighters and hitmen in political infighting. Failures in school, they were
Cleaning Church windows, for more light never introduced into the world building, farming, caring, teaching, nursing, managing, of work. driving, transporting, sweeping, Creative and productive work is c l e a n i n g , r e p a i r i n g a n d sharing in the work of the maintaining, guarding and Creator. Parents raising a family, securing – we do not do it just for teachers forming the minds of ourselves to have some cash in the children, pastors building Spirit- pocket, we do it for the filled communities – in all this community. We do it out of love are we cooperating with the for “our brothers and sisters”. We Masterbuilder. do it as “men and women for And the work we are doing, others”.
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A Presentation of the New English Missal By Fr. Joseph Mahlahla, Chishawasha Seminary Introduction According to Sacrosanctum Concilium - SC (Constitution of the Liturgy of Vatican Council II, 1963 - 65 , Divine worship is an “exercise of the priestly office of Christ,” hence it is very important to carefully exercise this office with great care and concern. In every liturgical celebration we encounter Christ’s person: fully divine and fully human. We encounter him as he really is , as Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. However, we approach the liturgical encounter with the understanding of our own time, culture and language. Nevertheless there is need to understand and preserve the ancient faith of the Church that has been handed down to us in the liturgical texts. We must understand the language and culture of the church’s prayer. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal says: “The new Missal…safeguards the deposit of faith handed down by more recent Councils….” (no. 10). The recent translation tries to address and fulfill this. It is the catechesis of the mystery we celebrate as it “offers an opportunity to deepen our understanding of the Sunday Eucharist and to find new ways of living it in our day to day life”. Surely the process surrounding the new translation of the English missal has been and still is
controversial in some spheres but we should appreciate that this present translation though not “perfect” is much better than the one that is being phased out. Why having a new translation? Vatican Council II states clearly that“Provided that the substantial unity of the Roman Rite Is preserved, provisions shall be made, when revising the liturgical books, for legitimate variations and adaptations to different groups, regions and peoples, especially in mission countries” (SC 38). Thus there are always legitimate variations in the liturgical texts. However, we should recall that the Church has a legitimate desire to communicate doctrinal nuances and to hand on the faith of the Church intact. The ancient faith of
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the Church is always enshrined and manifested in and through the liturgical texts. This is the reason why liturgy is considered “locus theologicus” (a theological standpoint). It “is the privileged locus of tradition, not only from the point of view of conservation and preservation, but also from that of progress and development”. Liturgy is, therefore, the source of theological knowledge. Poor translation to the liturgical texts distorts and threatens the truth of faith in the prayers. The new English Missal tries to express our Traditional faith more clearly hence is enabling the faithful to move more deeply into the sacred mysteries that we perform. This translation, therefore, rejuvenates and exposes the theological riches subsisting in the Eucharistic celebration. The Church is so concerned with the correct way of praying, particularly in the liturgy, since the way we pray reflects and expresses our faith, and “lex credenda lex orandi” –” the rule of faith is the rule of prayer”. The Church pursuing this fundamental motive has published a new English Missal. Changes found in the New English Missal There are a number of changes that are found in the New English
LITURGY translation and I suggest that we pay attention to just a few changes which are quite peculiar and are attracting a lot of attention and questions. “…and with your spirit” This is the literal translation that has been used in various modern languages (French : et avec votre esprity): (Italian: et con il tuo spirito) etc. It is only in English as modern language that it was translated differently and perhaps wrongly. But it had already been translated like that at first, when the first English translation of the Mass appeared in the mid-60s. The apparent new response has pneumatological implications. It implies the preside is the” alter Christus - the other Christ”. It is through the power of the Holy Spirit who draws all people into the assembly, that the priest is configured and formed in the image of Christ (homoiosis) , so that the priest becomes the true representative of Christ who became man the power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is present and indwelling in the presider and acts through him and with him for the benefit of the assembly. He inspires him to embody his inner spiritual life( in Christ) through words, deeds and service. This response, therefore, becomes a constant reminder to the presider that the Holy Spirit has taken possession
Liturgy struggling for suitable language of his deepest self , and that he is called to serve the faithful in his capacity as a priest. (The following three pages in the original script have been omitted.) Conclusion The new English Missal represents a much closer approach to both the meaning and form of the prayers in the original Latin. This ensures the uninterrupted tradition amidst the changing world. The new English translation is done not only to preserve what “ our forebears have handed on to us, but also demands an understanding and more profound pondering of the church’s entire past ages and of all the ways in which her one faith has been expressed in forms of human social cultures so greatly differing among themselves” (GIRM 9. ) Thus a broader view allows us to see how the Holy Spirit endows the People of God with marvellous fidelity in preserving the
unaltered deposit of faith, and this is what the English speaking community has in the new translation. Whilst some of the changes in the new Missal may be disturbing to some, one element to appreciate is that this translation is more faithful and close to the original and official church formulas and tradition. Fr Joseph Mahlahla, Liturgist at Chishawasha Seminary, gave a lecture on 24 November 2011 at Arrupe College on “Understanding the New Roman Missal”, just before it was introduced on the first Sunday of Advent in this country. This article is a shortened version of that lecture. We thank Fr Mahlahla for permission to publish the text, though shortened, in this journal.
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“And with your spirit” An explanation of the liturgical greeting as translated in the New English Missal By Fr Peter Chimombe, Masvingo Diocese, Nyika The Latin original of the texts of the Mass have been newly translated (New English Missal) by international cooperation, with Rome after corrections giving its approval, so that the texts reflect more closely the original meaning of the words used in the Latin Liturgy which have deep theological significance and are closely tied to the Gospels. Many would say that the late Archbishop Lefebvre whose excommunication was revoked by Pope Benedict XVI has now been vindicated. The use of the new English translation of the Roman Missal came into effect on the first Sunday of Advent 27/11/11, in all Anglophone countries including Zimbabwe. Putting the translation into Shona and Ndebele will probably take some time as we experienced with the New Shona Bible. ‘And with your spirit’ is the new (and old) literal translation of “et cum spiritu tuo” , which itself is a translation from Greek. This phrase was quite strange to the early Christians. It appears in ancient Christian writings like the Didache. It forms part of greetings in Pauline epistles: “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit brethren. Amen” (Gal 6 :18; Phil 4 ;23); “The Lord be with your spirit, grace be with you” (2 Tim 4: 22). Hence this is an ancient liturgical greeting used only by “followers of the Way “ who later became called Christians. The Didache says that at the Eucharist the ‘prophets’ should be allowed to give thanks as much as they desire. Thus when the assembled people replied to the president’s blessing, they
Liturgy -inspired action prayed that the Lord would be with the charism he had received. By the end of the 4 century AD, this spontaneous prayer had been replaced by the use of written prayers. In the church of Antioch and Syria, preachers like St John Chrysostem and Theodore of Mopsuestia were saying that the word “spirit” in the response referred to the charism of the grace of priesthood which Bishop or Presbyter had received. In saying “and with your spirit”, says Theodore, “They do not refer to his soul, but to the grace of the Holy Spirit by which his people believe that he is called to the priesthood” (cf. Baptismal Homilies 15:37). In the SyroMalabar rite of the 5 century the greetings is translated , “with you and with your spirit”. By translating it in this way, the Semitic people whose language is closer to Aramic which was spoken by our Lord and his disciples made it clear that it meant more than a simple “and also with you”. In the 5 century, Narsi of Nisibis explained thus; “The people
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answer the priest lovingly and say : with you, o priest and with that priestly spirit of yours.” They call ‘spirit’ not the soul of the priest, but the spirit which the priest has received by the laying on of hands. By the laying on of hands he receives the power of the Spirit so that he may be able to perform the divine mysteries. That grace the people call the spirit of the priest and they pray that he may attain peace with it” (cf.Exposition of the Mysterious Homily 17). St John Chrysostom in a Pentecost homily said,”If there was no holy spirit there would be no shepherds or teachers in the Church, for these come also through the Spirit.” As St. Paul says: “In which flock the Holy Spirit has established you Shepherds and Bishops (Acts 20:28). Do you not see how this also comes about through the Spirit? For if the Holy Spirit was not in him when he went into the sanctuary and gave all of you peace, you would not all have answered, ‘And with your spirit’. By this reply you are also reminded that he who is there does nothing, and that the right offering of the gifts is not of human nature, but that the mystic sacrifice is brought about by the grace of the Holy spirit and his hovering over all. For he who is there is a man, it is God who works through him. Do not attend to the nature of the one you see, but understand the grace which is invisible. Fr Peter Chimombe is a diocesan priest (Masvingo) and a parish priest. He is a writer whose articles have appeared mostly in ‘Catholic Church News’.
WHO HAS THE LAST WORD IN TRANSLATIONS? Oskar Wermter SJ
Catholics in Zimbabwe, most of whom celebrate the Liturgy of the Church in the vernacular languages (Ndelbele, Shona, Nambya, Tonga etc), may not be very concerned with the new English Missal, i.e. the new translation of the prayers of the Mass introduced in Zimbabwe on the first Sunday of Advent 2011. There has been criticism that liturgical experts of the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and finally the Holy Father decided on the new English text even though most of them are not native English speakers. To agree on one and the same English translation is difficult since there is English English and American English, English spoken as a first and as a second language, English spoken in many different cultures: western countries are passionate about “inclusive language” and “gender sensitivity” while others can live with “man” meaning “human person” and “he” referring not just to males, but to human beings in general. Do we really have to have just one English translation? Should not the Indians be allowed to have their own, and the Americans likewise? Can this not be left to Bishops’ Conferences? Must Rome always be in control and have the final word? Vatican Council II says the “competent territorial authority” decides on vernacular texts1. Most Zimbabwean Catholics may dismiss this as “not our problem”. But wait until our
The Word of God in our mother tongue Shona-, Nambya and Ndebele persons who happen to be in Rome Missals come up for revision. (mostly students, we are told) and Who decides on their final ask them to look at the texts wording? The Shona- or Ndebele submitted to them for approval. speaking Bishops? No at all. Even in the case of such local Are such students, worthy people languages Rome insists on though they may be (priests, having to approve of new religious), more competent to judge liturgical translations than translations. their Bishops back home? A tricky One the one hand, getting correct question. But the problem is not translations of these central texts mere linguistic competence. of the Liturgy is crucial. The We are confronted here, not Eucharist is our very centre. We merely with a liturgical, but an cannot afford to make a mistake. ecclesiological problem. The Pope and his curia have the If bishops are not just Roman final authority everywhere. So agents, acting on behalf of the Pope locally (a pre-Vatican II why not here? But, so we will ask, who on the view), but are bishops and staff of the papal curia knows our shepherds in their own right, with vernacular languages? The their own local authority, surely answer is obvious : no one. So they must have the right and duty, what do they do? They find in collegial cooperation with their Shona- or Ndebele speaking fellow bishops (in this case in a WANTED: WRITERS We invite our readers to respond to Mukai-Vukani through letters to the editor. Articles should NOT BE LONGER THAN 1200 WORDS.- Editor
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territory where the same language is being spoken, e.g. Shona- or Ndebele-speaking Zimbabwe, including Shona-speaking dioceses in Mocambique, and Ndbele / Zulu-speaking dioceses in SA), to give the final approval to liturgical texts once competent bishops, priests and professional translators have done their work. The Roman officials will think it a dereliction of duty if they voluntarily give up on doing the final checking on liturgical texts even in the most exotic languages, spoken in the most remote corners of the world. This matter must be taken up by the Bishops of Africa themselves. SECAM represents all African Bishops’ Conferences. Surely they must approach the central authorities in Rome and work out a
viable procedure, doing justice to the liturgical-linguistic aspect as well as to the ecclesiological one, namely that the local Bishops themselves must be deemed the competent and rightful authority in a matter where it is only too obvious that Rome exceeds its competence. The Church in Africa belongs to the Latin Rite, but does not speak Latin. The knowledge of Latin among African seminarians, even priests and bishops is minimal. And yet the Latin character of the prayers of the Mass and Sacraments, its dignity and sacred tone, is to be preserved. The vernacular texts are to follow as closely as possible the Latin original. Can this be done while still
LITURGY pursuing the aim of creating an inculturated liturgy, a liturgy that is at home in the local culture and speaks the local language, using local idioms and metaphors? Surely our languages have the power and potential to produce truly sacred texts? A literal, wordby-word translation may not necessarily be the best way to achieve this. “Archbishop Jabulani Nxumalo of Bloemfontein, who has long been involved in translating liturgical texts into Zulu, ….holds that language ‘is an expression of the soul of the people’ and it cannot, therefore, be determined by the conventions of another language, in the way that Liturgiam Authenticam2 would like translations to reflect the Latin original. Each language has its own idiom, its own world view….” 3 So there is need for more dialogue between periphery and centre, Africa and the Holy See, about Latin identity and cultural variety, about essential truth and its expression in a multitude of local idioms. 1
Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, chapter 1, no. 36 2 Roman directive laying down the rules for translating liturgical texts. 3 Paddy Kearney, Guardian of the Light, Denis Hurley, Renewing the Church, Opposing Apartheid, Continuum, New York – London, 2009, p. 294
Pope reaching out to all IN TOUCH with Church and Faith Through JESUIT COMMUNICATIONS A Catholic News Service for Zimbabwe
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LIVING WITH THE WAR VETS Douglas Rogers, The Last Resort, A Memoir of Zimbabwe, Short Books, London, 2012, 444 pp., US $ 20-00. Can a writer born in the country to white parents, but now settled overseas, teach us something about present-day Zimbabwe? The author of ‘The Last Resort’ reminds us at first of Peter Godwin and his trilogy on postindependence Zimbabwe. But then he turns out to be very different. It is not Douglas Rogers who has a message for us, but his parents who with great determination cling to ‘their’ country and their land in the Eastern Highlands. His father, half of Afrikaner origin, claims an African ancestorship of 350 years. This is not another book of bashing Mugabe and denouncing the “cleptocracy”, not more scoffing at the “failed state”. All this is taken for granted and wellknown. Boring stuff by now. This is the story of respectable elderly Europeans struggling to stay on their land while their friends and neighbours are driven away. As a lawyer, Dad had been working for many years with and for black clients, and now his and their struggle for survival brings them closely together. For retired people the superhyper- inflation of the first decade of the new century is devastating, destroying their pensions and savings. You cannot really retire, you merely change your job and find another way of making a living. The backpacker lodge was a good idea and worked well until young travellers from the States, Britain and Australia stayed away – the catastrophic headlines concerning Zimbabwe made sure of that.
You have to go where the money is. After the white clientele has left, old Mr Rogers goes into partnership with a black neighbour. The people with money are the ‘new elite’. If you want to survive you have to get their custom. “At first, well-to-do black professionals would just drive over for a few drinks. Soon they began bringing mistresses and hookers with them, able to spend time unseen by wives or prying neighbours.” Prostitution takes over to the amazement and embarrassment of the owners. Men come with their “small houses” to enjoy themselves far from their ‘official’ families. “Traditional Shona culture is still polygamous,” the author concludes. The next thing is that he discovers his father is growing marijuhana for profit. The son finds out that his parents, wanting to survive in a political culture like that prevailing in Manicaland 200609, had to “engage” with the
powers that be, the “top man” and his lieutenants, the “war vets” (born well after the war) and genuine freedom fighters with connections to Harare. Never mind their sympathies for the Movement for Democratic Change and undying hope that they will win the next elections, in his daily struggle for survival Dad comes to know the mindset of a not unsympathetic excombatant who like his party will never give up the claim to ownership of the country based on military victory, not a democratic majority vote, a meaningless exercise in their eyes. “In wining the war and ending white rule, they had earned a privilege that those who never fought - Morgan Tsvangirai, for example – could never have : the right to rule.” Dad’s hope for an election victory that would change everything was clearly futile. Dad is dragged into the morass of corruption. Trying to live by conventional moral standards becomes impossible. A smart young set of diamond dealers from nearby Chiadzwa descend upon the old people’s hostelry. They do not ask questions where their wealth comes from. It does not last long. Then the military, police and ‘chefs’ push them out. Mom needs a new passport and is close to getting one with the help of an “agent”. In the end her selfrespect (and lack of funds) force her to bring the happy relationship with the charming young crook, now gone sour, to a sudden end.
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But there is always a way in the land of “dealers”, if not this one, then another one, and the for a time stateless old lady eventually gets her Zimbabwean passport alright. There is only one law, but countless little tracks to pass it by. Marange is “one of the richest diamond fields on earth, a geological freak. Under normal circumstances this would be good for a country, but this is Zimbabwe.” The field is controlled by the regime and benefits no one else.
“In wining the war and ending white rule, they had earned a privilege that those who never fought - Morgan Tsvangirai, for example – could never have : the right to rule.” Dad’s hope for an election victory that would change everything was clearly futile. “But everything passes in the end, and this will too,” ends Rogers his ‘travelogue’. “And whatever happens my parents
BOOK REVIEWS will remain at Drifters [name of their plot] . They will die there, too.” At a funeral of black neighbours, victims of a drowning accident, they say, “We will be buried here, too”. In the meantime people who have read the “Last Resort” go there for a picnic to meet the famous old people (infamous, says Dad). They are real. This is not a book of fiction. - oWe
THE GIANT WHO STOOD UP FOR THE LITTLE PEOPLE ‘Guardian of the Light’, Denis Hurley – Renewing the Church, Opposing Apartheid, by Paddy Kearney, Continuum New York – London 2009, 382 pp. Reviewed by Fr Toney Bex SJ, Harare Two men once lived solitary lives, for different reasons, on Robben Island, off the coast of South Africa, near Cape Town. They were Nelson Mandela, who was in a high security prison there for twenty-three years, and Archbishop Denis Eugene Hurley OMI, whose father was a lighthouse keeper on the island. He and his family found that rather a solitary life too. Denis was born on 09.1.1915, the son of Denis Hurley and Theresa May O’Sullivan. They were married in Skibeereen, West Cork, on 11.11.1913, and Denis Sr. was a lighthouse keeper in various far flung places South Africa for many years. The Robben Island stint was from 1918-1923. Denis was educated in various schools, as his father was transferred from place to place, and on one occasion when at the Dominican run St.Thomas’s School, Newcastle, Denis and his companions, on an expedition to a
training for the priesthood in Ireland as an Oblate of Mary Immaculate in 1932. After the novitiate he was sent to Rome, to the Oblate Scholasticate and there pursued his priestly studies.
cave, got lost inside it and spent twenty-three hours in darkness before they were rescued. Denis attributed their rescue to St.Therese of Lisieux and he made a solemn commitment that if they were saved he would become a priest. Later, at another school he met Bishop De Lalle who encouraged his vocation and arranged for him to begin his
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He was rather disappointed with the courses, which he felt were too influenced by scholastic philosophy, and was heard to exclaim, ‘What are we doing here? Why are we studying all this nonsense when it does not relate to our priesthood at all?’ These views he remembered later as Archbishop when dealing with priestly formation. He was very insistent that studies should be relevant to the priestly ministry and should enable the future priest to ‘communicate’ with his flock. In 1940 Denis returned to South Africa and began his journey as a priest, soon to become the youngest bishop in the Catholic
BOOK REVIEWS Church in 1947, ordained on the feast of St.Joseph 1947 He took over the Durban Vicariate. This tall, well built man, soon made his mark on the vicariate and he became loved for his humanity and compassion for all and sundry, be it a young girl in search of a vocation, who he directed carefully for some time or, later, for a priest in difficulties whose fellow clergy wished to have him suspended, and Denis demurred and gave him new confidence and hope. What this book, written by Paddy Kearney, who was also involved with Archbishop Hurley in struggles against apartheid, shows clearly, is that if it is true that we owe much to our Anglican brethren for the struggles they had with apartheid, the Catholic Church, slower off the mark, nevertheless made a tremendous contribution to the overturning of apartheid. Bishop and, later, Archbishop Hurley was in the thick of that struggle all along the way to freedom in 1994, when free elections took place and Nelson Mandela became the first president of the new. South Africa At first even the Apostolic Delegate would take rather a cautious line with many of the priests in the country but gradually their attitude changed, largely due to the commitment to Justice and Social Equality Bishop Hurley fought for. He suffered too being brought to court after inveighing against the Koevert, ‘special forces’, actions in Namibia, though in that very court the government dropped their case against him, fearful of what he might reveal about their savage activities. He defended the rights of young
to outline here. Even a bitter opponent who described him as ‘an ecclesiastical Che Guevara’ could not stay his desire to fight evil wherever he found it.
Fr Tony Bex, S.J S.Africans to become ‘conscientious objectors’, when they were called up to fight in a war they could not approve of. He reacted forcefully to the happenings in Sharpeville and Soweto and, near the free elections of 1994, what was known as the ‘Seven Day War,’ when Chief Buthulezi and his Inkhata movement caused havoc in Zululand. Various statements of the Bishops Conference bear evidence of his interventions. Yet he always came across as a man of peace, who listened even to his bitterest enemies and never ‘lost his cool’ when engaged in hostile arguments and opposition. Even Chief Buthulezi , on the occasion of the Archbishop’s golden jubilee of ordination (1989) , could write,’ I want you to know that my respect for you is totally undiminished You have earned the respect that nothing can take away from you.’ That, at a time when relationships with Inkhata were difficult to say the least. The biography is full of Archbishop Hurley’s interventions and involvements in whatever might bring down the apartheid system. Too many
What about Archbishop Hurley’s work as pastor? Here too he often showed commitment to policies which not all his priests agreed with. One of his great projects was to encourage a new Catechetical Commission which revolutionized the teaching of the faith in schools. He also set up two organizations, ‘Diakonia’ and ‘Renew’ which fought for social justice and the deepening of the faith in small Christian communities. He also fought for the independence of Catholic Education when apartheid leaders wanted to impose their policies on all schools. He realized that this would mean financial difficulties but with the help of sterling efforts to raise funds, especially in the United States, he staved off the inevitable need for Catholic Schools to close because of lack of funds for many years. His work for ‘I.C.E.L.’, the Commission, tasked with the new translation of the liturgical prayers including the Roman Missal, was also something dear to his heart and it nearly broke his heart when the authorities in Rome terminated its work and worked at more literal translations of the liturgical texts. He would have liked a report in the ‘National Catholic Reporter’ of 26 t h December 2002 when Fr.Ignacio Calabuig OSK, a Servite priest, turned to Cardinal Arinze, Prefect of the Commission for Divine Worship and said, “What Rome is doing to good scholars of language, poets, and linguists, translators and
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anthropologists, leading scholars in their fields - telling them that they are unworthy or incapable of translating texts is wrong, and it must stop!.’ Among the deafening applause even Cardinal Arinze clapped! In Rome 1939 Archbishop Hurley had been present at the election of Pius XII and was privileged to receive his blessing. He commented later that ‘This moment was the closest I would ever get to the Papal Conclave.’ His words were prophetic and we may surmise why he was never made a Cardinal, an elevation his successor Archbishop Wilfrid Fox OFM received. Julian Filochowski commented that Archbishop Hurley was ‘the best Cardinal Africa never had.’ The reasons are not far to find. Archbishop Hurley was a towering figure of a man, both physically and otherwise. What he believed in passionately he felt the need to communicate at whatever the cost. He was not popular in the Curia for his views on ‘Humanae Vitae’ and the use of
BOOK REVIEWS could not help but love the man. Devoted, humble, ever courteous, always listening to whoever had an opinion, be they great minds or humble people, totally honest and committed; seeking always the will of God at all costs for himself or those he The great turning point of his life led; hard working into the night, was Vatican Council II which and a man of prayer. What else inspired his later work as bishop could you demand of a man! and long-time president of the Even when his views were not S o u t h A f r i c a n B i s h o p s ’ appreciated he was! Conference. He also had a great love of the After he resigned as Archbishop work of Pere Teilhard de Chardin and handed over to Archbishop SJ and defended him against his Napier he came to Emmanuel critics These views would not Catholic Cathedral, Durban as pastor of a rather run down parish make him popular in Rome. and devoted some years to its Having said this, it is also true that restoration. He lived as an he was much respected and loved ordinary parish priest. In what there,. As, to give an example, his companions called the Pope John Paul II, who described ‘Departure Lounge,’ the home him as,’ the courageous president for elderly Oblates Archbishop of South Africa’s Episcopal Hurley came as a humble guest Conference’. People knew he seeking no privileges. He was spoke always from the heart rather lively to the end and his last than from the head, though he was words, returning by car from always careful to insist that any Durban to Sabon House, where .’thinking’ commissions he he lived out his declining years, headed had to be clear and their were, on beholding the beauty of work properly worked out. You nature,’ Isn’t it wonderful that we have these beautiful trees and flowers?’ Some of them covered his grave, many sent by those he had loved so dearly. the pill; his advocacy of priestly freedom in the matter of celibacy; his views on the ordination of women and his efforts to save the work of ICEL to which he had devoted so much time and effort, in the end without success.
A colossus of a man and a devoted pastor of his flock, whose memory will linger on for many years. May he rest in peace.
He fought for the independence of Catholic schools
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Fr.Anthony Bex SJ is a retired pastoral priest and former spiritual director (Chishawasha). He now lives with other Jesuit ‘senior citizens’ at Richartz House, Mt Pleasant, Harare. He is in charge of the Jesuit Archives next door at Garnet House. He is a great reader and has been reviewing many books for this journal.
Against All Odds Morgan Tsvangirai, At The Deep End, Penguin Books, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, 2011, 563pp Reviewed by Gift Mambipiri This is the life story of Morgan Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister. This is also wholly the story of the Movement for Democratic Change. It can also read as the story of independent Zimbabwe – her finest moments and the journey into the wilderness of conflict and economic meltdown. Morgan was born on 10 March 1952 as the first born to Dzingirai-Chibwe and Lydia. He opens his memoirs by paying tribute to the Catholic schools that he attended that gave him a solid formation to understanding life in the then Southern Rhodesia. “Silveira and Gokomere gave me tremendous i n s i g h t s i n t o t h e world…Catholics tied to offer a holistic education, encouraging debate, tolerance and compassion. (29)” Tsvangirai explains his support for and understanding of the liberation forces and the struggle for Zimbabwe’s independence in 1980. Joining the struggle by crossing into neighboring countries was never on his mind as he was pre-occupied with fending for the family since his father did not have a steady job. The depth of poverty in his family is highlighted by an embarrassing situation that resulted in two of his younger siblings sharing one spare pair of shorts when they went to
Zimbabwe as it really was…each time I raised the subject of workers welfare with colleagues in Zanu (PF), in particular with our cabinet ministers, I was surprised at how quickly they dismissed my concerns as both uninformed and worthless (84).”
boarding school to start form 1. In his analysis of the 1980 elections won by President Robert Mugabe, it is ironic that Tsvangirai sees the heavy loss suffered by Muzorewa as a result of associating a lot with the whites. “Muzorewa had damaged his reputation irreparably. (68)” This is also what Mugabe thinks of Tsvangirai today. He is too close to the whites for comfort. Tsvangirai joined Zanu (PF) in 1980 and worked as secretary for the party, rebuilding it in Bindura whilst at the same time working as a trade unionist. The trade union work opened Tsvangirai’s eyes as he stumbled upon many q u es tio n s w h o s e an s w er s remained elusive. “ ….I saw a disconnect between the Zimbabwe we had and the unchanging, grim reality of
From here onwards, Tsvangirai’s personal life was to follow a trajectory from hope in a new Zimbabwe to disillusionment and disaffection with the ruling party and its autocratic leader. He left Zanu (PF) in 1984, giving himself over to national trade union activities, cementing a journey that would lead him to outright opposition to the government a decade and half later. As Tsvangirai fights with Mugabe today over unilateral decisions the latter often takes in matters of the state, he confesses the autocratic traits of Mugabe started a long time ago, in the early eighties when Mugabe sent the army into Mozambique when “the matter never came up to parliament, nor were the costs or the wisdom of the action explained to the people (96).” Mugabe was also to act unilaterally in the mass killings famously known as Gukurahundi in the Midlands and Matebeleland regions of Zimbabwe that claimed the lives of more than 20 000 people. This also marked the beginning of the souring of relations between
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BOOK REVIEWS Mugabe and the Church. Mission hospitals bore the brunt of Gukurahundi , having to attend to thousands of brutalized villagers who flocked to their doors. But Mugabe would not listen to them and accused Churches of siding with lawlessness. This led Tsvangirai to doubt Mugabe’s deep Catholic faith. “Having been to three Catholic schools, I was suspicious of Mugabe’s claim to be a deeply religious person, a devout Catholic. The Catholic Church preached fairness, sympathy and solidarity – especially with the poor – I recalled that the motto of my high school, Gokomere, was Vincere Caritate – ‘Conquer with Love’ (101)”. Tsvangirai’s first arrest came in 1989 when he wrote a statement to the press on behalf of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), where he was now Secretary General, in support of arrested students who had been picked up after demonstrations against one party state rule rocked the University of Zimbabwe. “It had never occurred to me that I could land in trouble by merely issuing a press statement but it dawned on me that Mugabe was angry with me…for leading the labour movement away from Zanu (PF) (130).” This was the first of several arrests, including three on treason charges that Tsvangirai was to negotiate through in his political career. The state has never secured his conviction at the courts despite numerous detentions. The ZCTU was to play a leading
role in the formation of an opposition party after realizing that workers were at the receiving end of poor government policies. What further infuriated the ZCTU leadership was Mugabe’s refusal to sit down with them, snubbing their calls, and when he agreed to meet, only using the platform to humiliate and accuse them of being puppets and threatening them to dare form political parties. The success of the opposition party that was formed is in the public domain. It propelled Tsvangirai to his current position as Prime Minister of the Republic of Zimbabwe. But again the journey as a leader of Zimbabwe’s largest opposition party has not been without incidents and regrets. Tsvangirai gives a chilling account of his close lieutenants in the MDC project, in particular Welshman Ncube and the late Gibson Sibanda. Ncube was accused of working for the Constitution Commission on its
rejected draft when it was party policy that they were against the draft constitution. He is also accused of having had many secret meetings with Patrick Chinamasa with the aim of usurping power from Tsvangirai. And in one move, he is said to have agreed to a draft constitution with Chinamasa that made educational achievements mandatory for presidential candidates. The total sum of the move was to elbow Tsvangirai out of presidential elections. Morgan is also unkind to Sibanda, his former deputy who he believes benefitted a lot as a leader from his wife’s counsel. And once the wife died, Sibanda lost direction. There is also space in the book for Tsvangirai’s late wife, Susan, whom he portrays as a pillar of strength and his confidante. “My wonderful wife had supported us in the hardest of times by being a simple housewife, a mother, and personal family mentor… (542)”
Tsvangirai with his mother-in-law on his left, and his mother
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BOOK REVIEWS The reasons for Tsvangirai’s entry into politics are summed up in the following lines. “I went into politics not as a career choice but in response to a burning desire for change from a nation already in crisis of governance, and as a patriotic necessity (544).” He sees his political role as that of the biblical Moses, “... a transitional leader with the goal of putting in place the institutions of democracy that will protect Zimbabwe from dictatorship (543).” On the subject of democracy in Zimbabwe, Tsvangirai is less hopeful. “We will not have a democracy in Zimbabwe until the nationalists who seized control of the state cease to regard themselves as the sole champions of liberation and, by extension, the ultimate underwriters of the people’s freedom (544).” As you round up the last chapters, you are moved by the story of this village boy who rose against all odds –from state sponsored terror and back stabbing by colleagues – to become the face of resistance and change in post independent Zimbabwe. That Tsvangirai survived three concocted treason charges after full trials is no mean achievement. That he was almost thrown out of the tenth floor window of his offices in 1998, and suffered many heavy beating but still continued to fight another day makes him the stuff of heroes. Going through the whole text leaves you with mixed feelings. Tsvangirai has told the history of
Zimbabwe from a fresh perspective. But he also edited out, or simply ignored important historical facts that he should have put right so that his autobiography is not seen as a self serving project. He does not say in detail what happened on the most treacherous day for his party - 12 October 2005 – when the party split. He omits to mention to the reader the press conference that he had at his house to announce his defiance of the vote that had gone against him, choosing to just say he left the meeting and went straight to Buhera. He also maintains that Robert Mugabe took over the presidency of Zanu (PF) via a coup on Ndabaningi Sithole who was in custody. He refuses to accept Tekere’s version that Mugabe did not support the move to depose Sithole yet he quotes Tekere extensively throughout his book.
Another deliberate distortion is the claim that he only got to know that he will be leader of the MDC the day before the first congress, in 1999. If I, as a boy writing my Olevels that year, knew from the day the MDC was launched right up to the congress day that Tsvangirai was the president, his pretence to modesty is really stuff for fictional characters. And the claim that his government introduced a multi-currency system in Zimbabwe is also untrue. The nation still remembers Patrick Chinamasa, acting finance Minister then, making the announcement in parliament under a Zanu (PF) government. But in overall, the book is a good read that opens readers up to the sights and sounds of Zimbabwe, the MDC and Morgan Tsvangirai, the man who twice would have been president had Zimbabwe been a democracy.
Tsvangirai campaigning in the rural areas in 2000
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Working in the Valley of Death Our 1970’s in Zimbabwe, Fr. M. Hender, O.Carm, 62 pages, Reviewed by Gift Mambipiri the parents who had to live with the pain and confusion of not k n o w i n g t h e i r c h i l d r e n ’s whereabouts. The reunions were “occasions of high emotion and delight (6).” But all this was at a great risk to the priest. And he had to negotiate a difficult path between the “legality” of government and what was moral and upright.
These are memoirs of a Carmelite priest Fr Michael Hender recorded in the thick of the Zimbabwean liberation war in the19 70’s. Fr Hender came to Zimbabwe in 1970 and was working in the eastern part of Zimbabwe, the place that was a thoroughfare for ‘insurgents’ who, frustrated by life in Rhodesia, crossed into Mozambique for military training. The area was also their gateway back into the country after training. As noted by the Carmelite Provincial, Fr Simplisio Manyika, in the foreword, the memoirs are like a guided tour of the missionaries during those challenging times of the 1970’s. Although they are personal, they shed light on what it meant to be a missionary during the struggle for the liberation of Zimbabwe, and how missionaries had to be discerning people in order to survive. In the ten years that he worked in Honde Valley, a stone throw from the Mozambiquan border, in the Mutare diocese, Fr Hender came face to face with death several times, having to negotiate freedom whilst a gun was pointed at him, walking through areas infested with landmines, and having to balance serving the people whilst at the same time avoiding to be entangled in the political and military battle between government soldiers and liberation war fighters. His major challenge was to keep the warring parties out of the St Columbus Mission premises so
that students learning at the mission were not affected by the war. For the insurgents, the mission was a recruiting ground that could be exploited to maximum advantage by providing human resources in the form of students who would leave books and opt for the gun. The government soldiers were also aware of this and wanted to always be within the school premises to check on would-be deserters. In one of his diary entries, Fr Hender records that he once put his life at risk when he chose to d i s o b e y t h e g o v e r n m e n t ’s decision to quarantine Chief Tangwena’s children from their parents as punishment for the parents’ refusal to be removed from the land between Troutbeck and Mozambique. Each time the families were moved, they kept going back. “As punishment and in the hope that they would change their minds, their children were abducted (4).” Fr Hender felt for
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There was also confrontation between the priest at Regina Coeli Mission, and white soldiers who placed a night curfew to prevent students from crossing the border into Mozambique, which was ten kilometers away. The soldiers also insisted on doing a head count of the students before 5am daily. “I said I wouldn’t allow it to be done unless I was told to do so by my superior, the Bishop…I said I would have them counted even at 4am if the Bishop said so (6).” He was sure Bishop Lamont, a fiery critic of the government, would not have allowed that.
...in the ten years...Fr Hender came face to face with death several times, having to negotiate freedom whilst a gun was pointed at him, walking through areas infested with landmines, and having to balance serving the people whilst at the same time avoiding to be entangled in the political and military battle between government soldiers and liberation war fighters.
BOOK REVIEWS Fr Hender walked the tight rope of not being clearly partisan in the eyes of both the white soldiers and the insurgents but twice he came close to death in traumatizing situations. The first was when he got a white visitor and the insurgents came to check on the visitor to find out if he was not an informer. There was some disagreement that resulted in the exchange of gunfire in his house but he was lucky to survive,
escaping into the dark night. Then there was another incident when he was in charge of St Joseph’s Mission in Chikanga and the insurgents came to “kill the white priests in order to teach the town of Mutare a lesson (47).” The two priests who were in the house, Fr Hender and Fr Pio, were raided at 01:00 hours, interrogated, and paraded before a firing squad. “Though they had
the rifles cocked and ready, they didn’t shoot (49)” The insurgents later left them alone, only taking with them the Mission vehicles. Reading through the selected entries in Fr Hender’s memoirs brings one into great appreciation of what the Church did for the oppressed citizens in the colonial era, and most importantly, how her servants worked and walked in the valley of death every day.
BACK TO THE ARCHIVES Nicholas M. Creary, Domesticating a Religious Import, The Jesuits and the Inculturation of the Catholic Church in Zimbabwe, 1879 – 1980, Fordham University Press New York 2011, 339 pp Reviewed by Oskar Wermter SJ The author posits “Jesuit resistance to inculturation” in his introduction, and spends the rest of the book to prove it, from archival sources rather than from live interviews and encounters with the living Church in Zimbabwe. Inculturation in his view is about “adapting the church universal to specific local cultures”. For Fr Pedro Arrupe SJ, superior general of the Society of Jesus (1965 – 1983), inculturation went well beyond adaptation. It is a concept and implies a theology not yet popularly known for most of the period the book covers. Only Fr Arrupe made the term and implied theology generally known. The author calls it a “Jesuit neologism”. Pope John Paul II used it for the first time in 1979. This is all towards the end of the period covered in the book. Is it not an anachronism to measure early Jesuit missionaries like Biehler, Richartz and Brown by this standard?
structure of this project”. Did it never occur to him to actually go to St Peter’s Mbare (only 12 km from the archives in Mt Pleasant) and get to know the parish community there as well as Jesuits who had laboured there before?
Creary is a scholar, and the book he has produced is very much the work of an academic. There are plenty of footnotes, references to sources and earlier research, registers and indices. He gets his information from archives: the fact that there was plenty of material available on Chishawasha and virtually none on St Peter’s Harare (now Mbare) “necessitated that I revise the
Fr Wim Smulders SJ (Mbare 1970 – 75), a man very much at home in the language and culture of the people, is not even mentioned. The people still remember him with affection even 37 years after his sudden death in 1975. It is regrettable that Creary never met Fr Rainer Zinkann SJ, an excellent linguist and a lifelong rural pastor with great sensitivity for the spiritual world of the people. The author means by Jesuits mainly British Jesuits. Fr Raymond Kapito SJ who was so deeply involved in the “Kurova Guva” debate, and Fr Ignatius Zvarevashe SJ, a great champion of inculturation who has written extensively about it, are mentioned only once. “The Germans generally worked
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among the Africans (predominantly rural) and the British worked among the settler population in the towns”. This is not just a simplification, it is untrue. Clearly the British are the author’s ‘black sheep’. But it was British Jesuits who did all the early research on the Shona language and produced the first books in Shona, the Shona Standard Dictionary, a translation of most of the Bible (which is still in use in the liturgy) and Shona teaching material. Is not language fundamental to all culture? The problem of Christian marriage is not so much the imposition of Western legal patterns, but the fact that men in Africa do not want to commit themselves to one partner for life (Do men anywhere accept monogamy except as a matter of Christian faith?) . The problem is monogamy in a polygamous culture. That the early Jesuit missionaries had problems with the names for “God” is nothing unique. This has been and still is a problem in many countries for young Christian churches. Eventually the Shona term “Mwari” was adopted and is now generally in use. In the process the Shona term became “Christianized”. What people mean today by “Mwari” may be quite different from what their ancestors 150 years ago meant by it. The question how to celebrate “Kurova Guva” (literally ‘beating the grave’ – a ceremony of bringing the deceased person home and establishing him/her as an ancestor) has occupied priests, both foreign and indigenous, religious and Christians in general for decades. The Church which includes Jesuit pastors very much concerned with the question received high
praise for publishing “Kuchenura Munhu” (“cleansing the person”), the Shona Rite for a Christian way of celebrating “Kurova Guva”. But research around 2000 showed that “Kuchenura Munhu” has not replaced the traditional “Kurova Guva”- ceremony. The author rejects a “purely sociological study of religion”. He is prepared to engage in “theological analysis”. He does not want to sever his studies from the faith perspective of the Church, he says. His key concept is “inculturation”, which “is the creative and dynamic relationship between the Christian message and a culture or cultures” (Aylward Shorter). Arrupe defined it as “the incarnation of the Christian life and message in a particular cultural context”. The question is: which culture are we talking about? Traditional culture as it existed before contact with the West, or as it exists today,
Fr Isidore Chikore, newly oedained, 1947
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BOOK REVIEWS a mixture of tradition and modern industrial society? The imposition of Western Christianity on African culture could perhaps have been avoided if the Jesuits had remembered their history, especially in India and China in the 17th century. It took Vatican Council II to refresh their memories. The Church in Rhodesia/Zimbabwe responded splendidly to Vatican II by establishing the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace in 1972. It would not have flourished without Jesuits like Fr (today Bishop) Dieter B Scholz, Fr Henry Wardale (first Jesuit provincial), Fr Paddy Moloney and Bro (now Fr) Fidelis Mukonori. But we are concerned here with more than a cultural conflict. That is the hub of the matter. What is the relationship between Christianity and African Traditional Religion (if such a thing exists)? Is it an encounter between two different religions at all? In that case we would have to call Christianity a religion like any other religion. Is that at all a suitable way of describing the relationship? Can they be subsumed under the same heading, namely “religion”? Insofar as God has indeed revealed himself to the African people of the past, we need to honour and respect the presence of God in their minds and consciences. Insofar as Christianity is the final and unsurpassable selfrevelation of God in His Word, His Son Jesus Christ, it can complete, correct or challenge traditional thinking about God and his creation. For example: the Church welcomes the African culture of
BOOK REVIEWS the family, and yet must reject polygamy which devalues woman, her dignity and personhood. Man must learn that the childbearer , the only function many men grant women, is a person in her own right, even if she is not tied to a man and does not bear children.
Christianity has been called the religion to end all religions. If religion is a way of taming and domesticating God, making him usable or suitable for human consumption, rendering him an instrument for harnessing spiritual powers, then Christianity is indeed the end of
all such attempts, and Christ the only way to the unfathomable God and Father of us all. Then his messengers must challenge traditional believers to transcend their understanding of God, however inadequate their own faith may be. (It is not the personal faith of the missionaries which challenges traditional beliefs, but the message they stand for which is not theirs, but God’s). The title of the book seems to imply that the mission of the Church is similar to the pursuit of economic interests the colonisers were engaged in
(“import”), except that it appears in religious guise. It is offensive. The author hopes that his book will contribute to solving issues like Christian marriage and funeral rites. Most unlikely. The book contains much interesting historical material. But it is presented in such a biased manner; I doubt it will clarify anything. We have moved on since 1980. “Domesticating a Religious Import” should be put where it originated – on the shelves of the archives.
In the midst of darkness By Admire Rufaro Nhika SJ
There we sat, in the midst of darkness We could not see each other’s faces Nor could we see anything around us It was as if we were blinded We could not see where we should go Or were we come from But there was a star, high in the skies It was only one star How terrible it was This star could not give any slightest light What then was its purpose? Why was it only one? It is making us feel bad, for we only see it But cannot see anything else! May this good for nothing star Disappear! For in this totality of darkness It is not helping us But one of us said, It is good that the star be there Let it be there! Even if we are not seeing anything around us We are seeing the star At least it is reminding us that we are not blind And who knows, Maybe other stars shall appear with it In the meanwhile, when we want to see something We see the star…
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Reconciliation , Justice and Peace