The Pallottine Mission in Malawi
The Official Opening of Saint Vincent Pallotti Kaphatika Parish
After 10 years of waiting for the Pallottine Mission in Malawi, the dream has finally come true. The official opening of the Pallottine Mission in Malawi took place on 8 December 2016 with the official opening of The Saint Vincent Pallotti Kaphatika Parish in the Lilongwe Archdiocese. Our Mission officially opened in an unforgettable event on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, the very symbolic solemnity in the Pallottine life and of course in all the Catholic Church. All kinds of people were present at Kaphatika, a very small village in the Ntchisi District: The Archbishop of Lilongwe, priests, religious, lay Christians Catholics and non-Catholics. All were in one spirit of joy and in one voice. They were singing, dancing, and thanking God who has chosen to install a Parish at Kaphatika. His Grace Tharcisio Ziyaye, The Archbishop of Lilongwe, who opened the new Parish in the name of Saint Vincent Pallotti Kaphaatika Parish started by blessing the foundation stone of the new Parish and declared the Saint Vincent Pallotti Parish under the responsibility of the Pallottine Fathers. Two Provincial Rectors were present: Fr. Helmut Scharler SAC, Provincial Rector of the Sacred Heart Province in Germany and Fr. Romuald Uzabumwana SAC, the Provincial Rector of the Holy Family Province. At the opening event, The Archbishop of Lilongwe installed two Pallottine Priests as responsible for that parish: Fr. Ignancio Chipiko SAC as parish priest and Fr. Ildephonse Bizimungu SAC. After that we celebrated the Mass as a thanksgiving sacrifice of the gift of the Parish from God Almighty. The liturgy was very highly prepared and the celebration expressed the joy of the people present.
After Mass, the speeches and gifts showed in joy the will of all to build the new parish together in order to become as others strong parishes. The Chief of Kaphatika village expressed in his speech the irreversible gift of land that the Kaphatika village had already given to the Catholic Church, emphasizing that to give to the church is to give to God Himself and to fight against the Church is to fight against God Himself. He invited the Catholics of Saint Vincent Pallotti Kaphatika parish to take care of that heavenly gift and he called all who have abandoned the Catholic Church because of missing priests to come back to the Catholic Church. In his speech, Fr. Helmut, the Provincial of the Sacred Heart province expressed the will of the Province to collaborate with the Archdiocese of Lilongwe to maintain this Pastoral mission in the spirit of Saint Vincent Pallotti. In his concluding speech, the Archbishop of Lilongwe emphasized his will of unity and collaboration of the Pallottine Father in the development of the pastoral life of the Archdiocese of Lilongwe.
After the ceremonies and sharing in joy the gift from the earth, we visited the house for lent founded to accommodate the Priests in charge of the new parish before building the presbyter house. They realized that the house was not in good condition to accommodate the priests. The following morning at the Archbishop’s house, The Archbishop of Lilongwe and the two Provincial Rectors agreed the priest were to be accommodated at Mpherere Parish before finding another house in good condition or building the presbyter Kaphatika. ((03.01.16: Fr. Ildephonse BIZIMUNGU, SAC; pictures: brother Bert Meyer SAC))