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TheS outher n C rossAugust 28 to September 3, 2019Reg no. 1920/002058/06no 5150www.scross.co.zaDo our priests have financial security?True stories from the…
TheS outher n C rossAugust 28 to September 3, 2019Reg no. 1920/002058/06no 5150www.scross.co.zaDo our priests have financial security?True stories from the streetsWhat we can learn from John BradburnePage 2www.scross.co.za/R12 (incl Vat RSa) associates-campaignPage 9Page 10SA priest now heads Oblate Rome house By eRIn CaReLSeAPRIEST from the Free State says his appointment as the Superior of the general house of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate in Rome is an exciting opportunity for the South African Oblates to respond to the needs of the congregation and the Church at large. Fr Mokone Joseph Rathakoa now is in charge of the Oblates’ headquarters on Rome’s Via Aurelia, just over 2km from St Peter’s basilica. The general house comprises three Oblate communities: the congregation’s central government comprising the superior-general and his council (11 members), the International Roman Scholasticate (19 members) and 28 Oblates residing in Rome. Fr Rathakoa’s responsibilities as the superior of the general house involve leading and coordinating the life of the community, facilitating communication among the three communities living on the same property, and hospitality. “One needs to be conversant in Italian as well as have a comfortable knowledge of other languages because of the multicultural dynamic of an international congregation,” Fr Rathakoa told The Southern Cross. Fr Rathakoa said that he was thankful to his predecessor, Fr Thomas Klosterkamp, for his guidance and smooth handover since his appointment. Fr Neil Frank, provincial of the OMI province of Southern Africa, said that the local congregation is proud that the central government had chosen one of their brothers from South Africa. “It is the first time we have a superior from Africa, and Fr Rathakoa’s gentle, amiable nature will be much appreciated in this international setting,” Fr Frank said. Born in 1965 in Grieselsdam, Free State, Fr Rathakoa entered Oblate formation in 1988, professed his first vows on February 6, 1991, at Our Lady of Hope novitiate in Germiston,Bishop Frank nubuasah at his installation as bishop of gaborone. the 70-year-old bishop had previously headed the diocese of Francistown, also in Botswana, since 1998. Bishop nubuasah, a member of the Society of the Divine word, is flanked by archbishop Dabula Mpako of Pretoria (left) and apostolic nuncio archbishop Peter wells.New bishop installed By SR PHatSIMO RaMOkgweBanaT Fr Mokone Rathakoa OMI, the superior of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate’s general House in Rome. Johannesburg. As a scholastic, he had his initial formation at St Joseph’s Theological Institute, Cedara, from 1990-93, and continued in Rome at the International Scholasticate from 1993-96. After professing the final vows in December 1995, he returned to South Africa. On December 6, 1997, he was ordained a priest at his home parish of Emmaus in Botshabelo, archdiocese of Bloemfontein. He worked as a formator in the pre-novitiate in Rayton, Gauteng, from 1997 to 2000. Fr Rathakoa was then sent to Rome, to study at the Institute of Psychology of the Gregorian University, from 2000-04, to equip himself with more knowledge and the skills needed for a formator. On his return, he worked at St Joseph’s Theological Institute from 2004-09. Continued on page 2HE installation of Bishop Frank Nubuasah as the fourth bishop of the diocese of Gaborone attracted multitudes of people at the University of Botswana Indoor Sports Arena. In attendance was Botswana’s President Dr Mokgweetsi Eric Masisi and the First Lady Neo Masisi, Batlokwa Paramount Chief Kgosi Puso Gaborone, and members of Botswana Council of Churches. Archbishop Peter Wells, the apostolic nuncio to Southern Africa, metropolitan Archbishop Dabula Mpako of Pretoria and other bishops, clergy and religious attended as well. Archbishop Mpako, as metropolitan of the diocese, presided over the installation of Bishop Nubuasah. The archbishop urged the faithful and the clergy of the diocese of Gaborone to “work well with [their new bishop] through collaborating with him as a man of wisdom with fuller experience”. Although things have not been easy for the Catholic community of Gaborone in the last few years, there is still hope for them to turn a new page of positivity in the book of history, he said. After the bishop, a Divine Word Missionary who had headed the diocese of Francistown since 1998, took possession of his newdiocese, priests, deacons, religious and members of the diocesan pastoral council pledged their loyalty to him. President Masisi told the congregation that Bishop Nubuasah “undoubtedly brings a wealth of experience with him which will contribute to the development of the Roman Catholic Church in Botswana and the welfare of Batswana in general”. He called on the Church to be partners with the state in pursuing the common good of the nation. The president acknowledged the significant contribution of religious institutions, in particular the Catholic Church, to Botswana’s socio-economic development. Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference president Bishop Sithembele Sipuka of Mthatha noted that “a bishop is not chosen for his own sake; rather he is chosen for the sake of pastoral work; [so] congratulations are more to you than to [Bishop Nubuasah]”. Archbishop Wells told the congregation: “I have seen Bishop Frank as a true shepherd of his people, having a humble approach in everything he does, his loving care and concern for the poor, for young people for the sick and elderly and above all his compassion and mercy for those in need of being welcomed and embraced by his fatherly love.”S outher n C ross Pilgrimage HOLY LAND & OBERAMMERGAU PASSION PLAY 21 Aug - 2 Sept. 2020 Led by Archbishop William Slattery OFM For more information or to book, please contact Gail at info@fowlertours.co.za or phone/WhatsApp 076 352-3809www.fowlertours.co.za/passion2the Southern Cross, august 28 to September 3, 2019LOCALPriests must have financial security, congress told NO bishops’ conference in southern Africa has set up policies for the financial and other support of clergy, according to a priest of Eswatini. “At best, we have seen pious statements not supported by real, serious policy decisions,” said Fr Dumisani Vilakati, who heads the pastoral department of the InterRegional Meeting of Bishops of Southern Africa (IMBISA), of which the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference is a member. Fr Vilakati, a diocesan priest from Manzini, addressed the first Congress of the Clergy in Luanda, Angola. The congress was held by the bishops’ conference of Angola, São Tomé and Principe. The congress took as its theme the self-sustainability of the clergy. The fact that the region’s bishops’ conferences have not planned for clergy support causes “lots of anxiety among members of the clergy, who more often than not embark on self-help projects to make ends meet”, Fr Vilakati said. While priests doing self-help projects “is not bad in itself, this may hamper the work of the Church as more time and energy are spent on projects and activities that are at times foreign to the missionary spirit expected of the clergy”, he said. “It is a pity that after a hundred years” since Pope Benedict XV’s 1919 apostolic letter Maximum illud, on the Church’s missionary activity, “not even one episcopalconference in the IMBISA region has created a policy on the proper care, material and financial support for members of the clergy.” In southern Africa, churches mostly make their own arrangements for the sustenance and remuneration of priests, Fr Vilakati said. “There is, in the main, a stable figure that gets paid to the priests every month,” he said, but monthly stipends and other allowances vary among different conferences. Giving figures in US dollars, Fr Vilakati said that in the SACBC territory, a monthly stipend ranges from $150-250 (R2 300 to R3 800) plus about R1 500 a month for medical aid. “The diocese or the parish normally provides and maintains the vehicle which the priest uses for his work. He is also allowed to use the vehicle for his private errands,” Fr Vilakati explained. “Furthermore, the diocese, or even more specifically the parish, provides for residence including food and the general expenses of running a parish,” he said, noting that when the parish cannot afford all these things, the diocese usually intervenes. Fr Vilakati said that, according to a colleague, the monthly allowance in Mozambique is between R750 and R1 500. In Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Namibia the figures range from about R1 500 to R3 000, plus occasional Mass offerings provided by the bishop.“Some priests fall in the cracks,” Fr Vilakati said, noting that “this is especially true when it comes to the giving of regular monthly allowances, holiday allowances and medical assistance”. Even within the same countries, priests often have very different economic situations, he said. Dioceses that create a fair system of sharing resources are “few and varied”, Fr Vilakati said. Their good practices should be modelled by others in the region, along with transparent administration, he added. Fr Vilakati noted that his research included only diocesan clergy, especially those engaged in parish work. He referred to the Second Vatican Council’s Decree on the Ministry and Life of Priests, Presbyterorum ordinis, which “emphasises the bishop’s duty on two important matters”. Firstly, he has to remind the faithful of their responsibility to provide for the priests’ sustenance. “The second duty of the bishop, which flows from the first, is to see to it that the priest enjoys a proper holiday each year,” Fr Vilakati said. Presbyterorum ordinis also insists that where social security for priests does not exist, the local bishops’ conference is expected to implement it. “This becomes a form of solidarity as larger and probably richer dioceses come to the aid of smaller and or poorer ones,” Fr Vilakati said.Souther n Cros s PilgrimageMEDJUGORJE • ROME ASSISI • LORETO18-27 May 2020 With Archbishop Stephen BrislinPray in Medjugorje and visit Rome, with papal audience, Assisi, the town of St Francis, Loreto with Mary’s House. Plus a tour of historic Split in Croatia. ThRee counTRieS in one TouR!For more information or to book contact Gail atinfo@fowlertours.co.za or phone 076 352-3809www.fowlertours/medjunkandla agape personified! gathered for a reunion of work, heart and spirit in nkandla, kwazulu-natal were (from left) Maria ntombela, 81, Sr Sola Schaumann, 99, and anna ntombela, 100. (Photo: Sydney Duval)Reunion’s average age: 93 By SyDney DuVaLTHREE women with an average age of 93 gathered together in a reunion of work, heart and spirit in Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal. Anna Ntombela, who is 100 years old, and her daughter Maria Ntombela, 81, met up with Nardini Franciscan Sister Sola Schaumann, who is 99. Maria is the sole survivor of eight siblings. The Ntombelas joined Sr Sola in 1989 when she set up Sizanani Huts to get craftwork going as a way of providing skills that couldput food on the table through beadwork, knitting, weaving, spinning and dyeing. Reading, writing and Bible study were also part of the community development outreach established by Sr Sola to help alleviate poverty. Sr Sola has been honoured by Pope Francis and the German government for her work in health care and poverty alleviation, going back to 1959 when she began working as matron of the Nkandla hospital established by the Benedictine Sisters of Tutzing in 1939.Retired Sisters welcomed old friend, the bishop By MICHaeL PRaVetzDOMINICAN Sisters were delighted when their old friend, a retired bishop, came to visit them. It was a reunion when Bishop Reginald Cawcutt, retired auxiliary in Cape Town, visited the Sisters at their retirement home, Rosary House, in Springfield. He had worked with many of the Cabra Dominican Sisters throughout his many years in the priesthood prior to his retirement. Both Bishop Cawcutt and the Sisters ministered to the deaf community, often crossing paths in their respective ministries. Bishop Cawcutt can conduct a Mass in sign language. Rosary House has a spirited atmosphere, with daily Mass in their modern chapel, wholesome meals in their newly-renovated dining room, excellent nursing care, and spacious, comfortable and friendly community rooms—the deserved “perks” after their many years of selfless service. The Cabra Dominicans arrived in South Africa 156 years ago. Cabra, meaning “poor land” in Gaelic, is the section of Dublin where that congregation of the Do-Bishop Reginald Cawcutt has a chat with Sr anthanatius Melican OP, aged 98. minican Order opened its first convent. By coincidence of God’s design, when Bishop Cawcutt was made a bishop in 1992, he was named the titular bishop of Cabra, which was a diocese near the Spanish city of Seville.SA priest heads up Oblates’ Rome HQ Continued from page 1 After a stint as novice master at the Germiston novitiate in Germiston, in 2010-11, Fr Rathakoa’ was appointed provincial of the Oblates’ central province of South Africa. He remained in that office until the amalgamation of the three South African Oblate provinces in 2018. He had concluded a sabbatical year when he was appointed superior of the Oblates’ general house in Rome. “I am grateful to my home provincial, Fr Neil Frank, for the opportunities I had to live and serve inSouthern Africa, and now to Fr Louis Lougen, the superior general, and his Council for giving me an obedience to serve the Oblate congregation in this position,” Fr Rathakoa said. Other South Africans at the general house are: Fr Peter Foley, the assistant to the general treasurer; Fr Callistus Khathali, a formator at the International Roman Scholasticate; Fr Sebastian Rossouw, who is pursuing studies in Scripture; and Br Louis Sechogela OMI, a scholastic at the International Roman Scholasticate.the Southern Cross, august 28 to September 3, 2019LOCAL3Theologian hits the road to raise funds By eRIn CaReLSeABr John nhlanhla Mhlanga OMI, who is calling fellow cyclists in the amashova Durban Classic to join him in raising funds for learners.N Oblate theologian will hit the asphalt on his bicycle in October to raise funds for the community outreach programme of St Josephs’s Theological Institute (SJTI) in Cedara, KwaZulu-Natal. Br John Nhlanhla Mhlanga OMI will be cycling in the 106km Tsogo Sun Amashova Durban Classic, South Africa’s oldest road classic cycle race from Pietermaritzburg to Durban which attracts more than 10 000 cyclists nationally. Br Mhlanga began taking part in cycle races last year; the Amashova 2019 will be his fourth and perhaps most difficult race yet. Br Mhlanga is the financial administrator and a lecturer in moral theology at St Joseph’s Theological Institute. He is also a formator for the Oblate students who are training for the priesthood or preparing for ministry as Oblate Brothers at the institute. This year St Joseph’s established an “engagement hub” to facilitate community outreach and social engagement. “We realised the need to engage with the Church and society by providing, firstly a space for such engagement, and secondly programmes through which we can reach out to the community,” Br Mhlanga said.“The idea of building a multipurpose facility—which we have come to refer to as the Engagement Hub—was born, and we began thinking of immediate ways to engage the community,” he said. Recently Br Mhlanga was told that some students from the local combined school had been hit by a train while taking a short cut because they stayed far and could not afford transport fare. “This was very tragic and heartbreaking. The one lingering question was, what can I do to help? It was then that I thought I would cycle for a cause.” The SJTI Amashova 2019 is meant to raise funds for the support of school children from the local school in Sbongumbomvu. Support will be threefold: • It will sponsor some disadvantaged matriculants to get to study for a degree in theology and philosophy by offering full-tuition scholarships to at least six students at the cost of R35 000 per year per student at St Joseph’s Theological Institute. • It will also pay for transport for some local Sbongumbomvu students who often miss class because they do not have money for transport to school and are vulnerable to dangers if they have to walk. • It will sponsor school uniforms for some students from the localSbongumbomvu Combined School. An online fundraising platform has been set up. “We hope that in the weeks leading to the Amashova 2019 on October 20, we will get more funds coming in,” Br Mhlanga said, adding that the students who will be the initial group of beneficiaries have already been identified. Cyclists who are willing to participate in the Amashova 2019 to raise funds for St Joseph’s can be part of the online campaign. They will be wearing St Joseph’s cycling jerseys that will have at the back written, “I am cycling for [name of student]”. “We want to impact the lives of real people with real stories who are living in situations of real need and we can offer them real hope and a real chance of a better future,” said Br Mhlanga. The back of his cycling jersey will sport the slogan, “I am cycling for Sthabile”. Sthabile is a young grade 12 student who cannot make it to school all the time because of transport problems. “A testimonial from one of her teachers says that she is one of the best students in her year class. Such a student needs all the help she can get and there are many more out there like Sthabile,” said Br Mhlanga.Bishop condemns violence against albinos By BROnwen DaCHSTHE Church in Africa must work to end violence against people with albinism through its schools and other education efforts, according to Bishop Sithembele Sipuka of Mthatha, president of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference. “It’s the mindset that needs to be changed,” said Bishop Sipuka, noting that superstitions are entrenched. About 150 people with albinism have been killed for their body parts since 2014 in countries that include Tanzania (with 76, thehighest number of killings), Malawi, Mozambique and Congo, Amnesty International said in a statement from Johannesburg. Across southern Africa, albinos “live in fear of being killed or abducted for their body parts”, Amnesty International said. “These waves of violent attacks are fuelled by the false and dangerous myth that body parts of persons with albinism can make someone rich,” it said. The body of a person with albinism can bring many thousands of rands on the black market. Albinism is a congenital condition that leaves people withouta Malawian boy with albinism. the Church in africa must work to end violence against albinos, according to Bishop Sithembele Sipuka. (Photo: LawILInk, courtesy amnesty International) colouration in their skin and hair. “It is simply a biological condi-tion,” said Bishop Sipuka. “We need to educate people about albinism in our schools, catechisms and sermons,” he said, noting that “everybody is created in the likeness of God, and we need to acknowledge and protect that”. He said bishops in countries such as Malawi and Tanzania, where violence against albinos is “most brutal”, have the support of the Church in other African countries in their calls for stronger action to end it. Not only physical violence but also negative attitudes towards people with albinism “are totally unacceptable,” Bishop Sipuka said.Young students build leadership By DIOn MkHOSanaWHAT we need in South Africa is “mindful leadership at the service of the common good”. This was the prayer and effort of 23 young leaders during a three-day workshop held by Young Christian Students (YCS) at Christ the King parish, Soweto, Johannesburg. In Women’s Month, the workshop celebrated the contribution of women to South Africa’s society. Schools from Vanderbijlpark, Soweto and Parktown gathered to discover that leadership-building can be f
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