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                                                                                     Bishop’s Word
Dear brothers and sisters,
The lord has risen, Alleluia!
I hope all of us had a joyful and blessed Easter.
The persistent rain on Holy Saturday threatened the solemn celebration of the Easter Vigil. The logs prepared for the blessing of the new fire were damp and we had a hard time to light them. Maybe the bonfire this year was not as spectacular as we would have liked, but with patience and effort we succeeded: at last, the fire was there, the Easter Candle was lighted and we could make once more the symbolic gesture of sharing in the light of Christ. Darkness was conquered by light.
This made me think:

  1. We must not give up in our effort to bring the light of the Gospel; to the lives of people. With God’s grace and our tireless co-operation, light will prevail;
  2. A small flame can cause a great fire: if shared, that little flame multiplies and produces much light and warmth. Deeds of love, no matter how small they are , bring warmth to the hearts of both, the “agent” and the “recipient”;
  3. I have to be open to the light that is in others. Every person matters.  At Easter we are reminded of our vocation. The Lord invites us to be humble bearers of His light, His peace, His joy. We are called to give witness to the tender love and mercy of God made manifest in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

May we, during this Easter season, encounter the Lord and be filled with the joy the women and the disciples experienced when they saw Him risen.
Happy Easter!
+Albert Serrano

Consecrated life
What are religious vows and what is a charism?

“God has made the light shine in our hearts to radiate and to make known the glory of God as it shines in the face of Christ,” (2 Cor. 4: 6)
The year for the consecrated Life, proclaimed by the Supreme Pontiff, runs from 29th November 2014 to 2nd February 2016 the World Day of Consecrated life. It was proclaimed on the 50th Anniversary of the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, (LG). The sixth chapter of this document contains an elaborate message on Religious Life. In the Vat II Documents, we also find the Decree on the Renewal of Religious Life, PerfectaeCaritatis, (PC).
What is consecrated life? In responding to their baptismal call, some men and women join religious communities in order to consecrate their lives to God as a way of seeking holiness. To consecrate something means to set it aside or devote it to a holy purpose. When a man or woman decides to accept Christ’s invitation to leave everything and follow Him in a more radical way, they make vows to live like Jesus in poverty, chastity, and obedience. They participate in a ceremony in which they make this commitment, much like a married couple exchanges their vows on their wedding day. They promise Christ that they will live the rest of their lives dedicated exclusively to Him. These vows help them to live simply, to be more open with God, and to depend totally on Him.
Consecrated Life, therefore, is a permanent state of life recognized by the Church, entered freely in response to the call of Christ to the perfection of love and characterized by the making of public vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.
Pope Francis dedicated 2015 to the promotion of Consecrated Life, asking us to “wake up the world” with our testimony of faith, holiness, and hope. The Holy Father also asked those in consecrated life to look at the following three things: Gratitude to God for the past; Passionate love for the moment through the Holy Spirit; and Hope for the future.
What does he expect from the consecrated? Joy – find joy in the fraternity and mission; Be more prophetic  - awake the world; Be experts  in building communion; Reach out, ‘go forth’; and To re – evaluate themselves; what are we doing?
The consecrated persons are invited to ask themselves the following questions: What kind of medium (of gospel message) am I/ are we? Where am I/are we coming from? What kind of gifts or contents am I/are we carrying? Who is benefitting from my/our gifts/contents?
Aware of our limitedness or inability to reach out to all the people of God and ably share with them all their needs, we are called to collaborate with all our brothers and sisters. Sometimes, pride has led us into isolation. Pride does not only shut out God and others but also shuts up God and other people. Evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience are a source of freedom to reach out to the needy, and also an inspiration for collaboration with others to serve the Church.
There must be cooperation and working relationships between the Bishops and the consecrated persons for “the organic development of diocesan pastoral life…. The Charisms of the consecrated life can greatly contribute to the building up of charity in the particular churches,” (V.C, art., 54, AM, art., 120). This means welcoming them and giving them a “place in the pastoral plans of the diocese,” (V.C, art., 54). Paul VI was of the view that “consecrated life is a gift to the church, it is born of the Church, it grows in the church, and it is entirely directed to the church.” He further said that consecrated life was not an isolated marginal reality, but deeply a part of the Church. ‘It is at the heart of the Church, a decisive element of her mission.’
There must be collaboration between the consecrated persons and the laity. They must look at those in consecrated life as a gift to the Church, “with a view to cooperation and exchange of gifts, in order to participate more effectively in the church’s mission,” (V.C, art., 54)

(Look out in the next issue: A short history of consecrated life, meaning of religious life, difference between the Religious and the Diocesans, what are the religious vows and what is a Charism)

 By Fr. Pontiano Mulenga SDB


Young people need education.
Our catholic schools provide the education needed by young people. In our schools the focus is on children.  Now the Education Commission has produced a document entitled: CHILD PROTECTION POLICY .
The policy will go a long way in helping the students and those in charge of them in implementing and achieving the goals pertaining to education



Social Doctrine of the Church Course
Fr. Stanislaus Lumano

Chimuniko Pastoral Centre (23rd – 25thApril ).
Are the way things are the only way they can be? Can the activities and praxis of Small Christian Communities (SCC’s) remain merely small prayer groups or bible-sharing groups?
The participants stood on their two feet of Christian service and took part in; “The Role of SCC’s in Promoting STC’s [‘Option for the Poor’]”.

  • Examined what it means to live in poverty.
  • Explored Catholic Social Teachings related to worldwide poverty and the dignity of all God’s people.                                          

The program included:

  • Building a Learning Community
  • Fundamental Human Needs
  • Responses to Poverty
  • Redistributive Justice
  • Problem Solving

The Social Teachings of the Church (STC’s) will ever remain “the best kept secret” if parish social ministry isn’t taken seriously and prioritized to serve the needy and advocate for justice and peace.
“Walk the Walk”; “Talk the Talk”;

“Walk the Talk”; “Talk the Walk”


1.         Siamuloba piped water scheme.
CARITAS installed a solar powered water pipeline from the lake in Siamuloba village,  Simatelele ward,  Binga district. In this village, the major source of water was the Zambezi river which is about 5km away. The major challenge that was being faced by the community was the constant attacks by crocodiles when fetching water. In an effort to address the problems of distances travelled and the attacks by crocodiles, a solar powered piped water scheme was established.  A consultant was engaged by CARITAS to do a feasibility study. After the production of the feasibility study, a contractor was engaged to do the work.
2.         Works done.
The work involved the establishment of a 6.5km pipeline from the source to the last tape. A solar powered system, two pumps, a 50 000 litres tank and two 2 500 litres tanks were installed. One tank was installed at the homestead where the solar system is erected and the other at Sebungwe Mouth primary school. Nine communal tapes were also installed along the way. The solar system was installed at the homestead for security reasons.  A sand filter was installed for water purification. The pictures below show some of the installations that were done.
3.         Achievements.
Some positive changes have been noted because of the project. The distances travelled to access water has been reduced from an average of 3 km to 200m. Risks of crocodile attacks have also been reduced significantly. The table below shows the number families benefiting from each tape.



F users

M    users


Councillorjojo tank 1





Guunzi Tap





Kamata Tap





Kanzonzo Tap





Masempo Tap





Chendeke Tap





Sebungwe Mouth Teachers' Tap





Sebungwe Mouth School  Jojo 2 Tap





Chilundu Tap







During the period under review a Zonal meeting was held on the 28th March 2015 at the St Ignatius Cathedral which was attended by representatives from all the 16 parishes.  A diocese meeting was held on the 7th April 2015 at the St Francis Xavier - Cross Dete which was attended by representatives from the three Zones.  
At the Zonal meeting the main discussions centred on preparations for the forthcoming National Retreat for Leaders which will be held from 23 to 26 April 2015 at Shungu Secondary School which is situated a few kilometres out of Kwekwe.  Other items which were part of the agenda worth noting were:  a] Affiliation fees – explanation and backdating of payments; b] Payments for national Retreat and Maria Unchena offertory; c] Submission of monthly reports from all parishes and the treasurer’s report. The next Zonal meeting will be held on the 11th April 2015 at the same venue.
At the Diocese meeting final arrangements pertaining to the National Retreat were discussed.  Zones were asked to organize donations of blankets, sheets, clothes and grocery to be handed over to an orphanage home after the Retreat. Fifteen ladies from the Diocese of Hwange will attend accompanied by the Sr and Priest.

Preparations are underway for full participation by all Women of St Anne at Maria Unchena.  Hwange Zone will be holding its annual All Night Prayer at the St Ignatius Cathedral on the 26th June 2015. 


The members of the Legion of Mary Association (legionaries) held their annual urban Acies ceremony at the Cathedral on the 21st march this year.His Lordship +Albert Serrano presided over the Eucharist.FrMasimbaNyoni gave a brief talk onAcies He noted that Acies is a Church function which is held annually about the feast Annunciation for the members to renew their consecration to Mary. Acies is a Latin word meaning an army ranged in battle array, is appropriate to a ceremony in which the legionaries as a body assemble to renew their fealty to Mary Queen of the legion, and from her to receive strength and blessing for yet another year’s battle with forces of evil.
‘Mary is an object of terror to the powers of hell. She is terrible as an army set in battle array’ (song 6: 10), for like a wise Commander, she well knows how to dispose her power, her mercy, and her prayers for the confusion of the enemy and for the benefit of her servants” St AlphosusLigouri.
Acies is one of the most beautiful and profound function the Legion.
In his concludingremarks he noted “If we knew what Mary’s maternity of each of us cost her and if we had even an inkling of her love for us and her share in the work of our salvation we would probably find making a total consecration to her the most inevitable thing we could ever do” 
Over three hundred senior members of the legion of Mary and 43 juniors had theopportunity to renew their pledge.  To be a full member of the legion of Mary one requires to be sworn in to the group by way of pledging their troth. 


Young people have clearly expressed what they hope to receive from the families, church and society in order to enable them to build better families, church and society of today and tomorrow. According to a report prepared by the AMECA Documentation Service they expect: “Parents, teachers, pastors, educators and government authorities to take interest in them and parents especially to be living examples for their children. The church and government should organize training courses, which will prepare teachers, organizers and instructors for the youth programmes. Practical catechesis to be organized for the youth as well as on-going formation and well planned social activities, which will bring youth together and give them incentives for greater reflection and commitment. Religions Education Programmes to be seriously followed in schools and not regarded as a minor subject.
Youths in the Catholic Church are asking questions and they need to be provided with answers. This period is crucial from the human development point of views. There is need to accompany the young people in their activities. Leaving this responsibility to the untrained adults has done more harm than good to the catholic youth who are usually misunderstood especially in the areas of emotions. Gallagher (1986) is right to say: the younger generation is suffering more from confusion over faith them from any definite rebellion against religion.
The youth took expectantly waiting for the Catholic Church to calm their fears and clear the confusion in their hearts about the do’s and dont’s of their church. Their questions mostly go unanswered hence, the uncertainties increase and the daily confrontations from their peers leaves them with a sense of ignorance about their church and at the end they feel frustrated and leave. Today the young people expect examples, living testimony from their adults: parents.
The Catholic Church should prioritize the expectation of the youth. The days of faith our fore mothers and fathers is for gone young people need to see, feel and believe in the spiritual experiments according to their age and time. 
Let the church listen to the young people and find remedy from the challenges faced by some members of the church who are troubled at heart and these are the youth.  


Fr David Muguti was in the diocese recently on a tour of some of the projects of Propaganda Fide. He was able to visit Fatima Mission and Manganganga (JotsholoMossion).
The Missionary Childhood in the Hwange zone managed to successfully hold their congresses at parish level.     
Several parishes recently held joint congresses which also consolidated the family spirit of the diocese. 
Fr. Luis Carlos, who is still in Spain sent resource materials to the animators for the just ended period of lent and vocation month (July).The Missionary Childhood collection (for February) from the parishes is still trickling in.Parishes   that are yet to submit their collection (at the Bishop’s House) are being encouraged to do so as soon as possible.

Twenty two people attended the workshop from Binga Parish.
The attendance was average
The lessons were given as per program
Participation was good.
Gender inequality- Only two men attended the workshop
Language – Mrs.Mpala one of the facilitators was not well conversant with the language. (Tonga)
Days were few –Not all lessons planned for were delivered.
Some animators were illiterate - could not read and write.
Reports show that projects are not done in order to help other children in need.
Frequent workshops at least once a term.
Select a representatives i.e. a nun who is well conversant with the language to make follow up on activities.
Hold zonal workshops i.e. BingaKariyangwe and Kamativi so that people share ideas and learn from others.
To hold a diocesan workshop- representatives from zones to attend. 

MINUTES OF THE Western Deanery

Present: Right Rev. Bishop Albert Serrano, Frs Johannes Alarcia,Nemesio Frias, Stanislaus Lumano, MgciniMoyo,TafumaKujani, VusumuziNdlovu, Nicholas Nkamba, MasimbaNyoni, Timothy Peacock, Keto Sithole,BrillieTshuma,JabulaniNyoni, PontianoMulenga and Rev Wisdom Simwinde
Apologies: Frs Marko Rumuma and Bruno Zamberlan.
The meeting started at 3:00pm and FrAlarciagiving an opening prayer. The Dean FrVusumuzi thanked FrAlarcia for the morning reflection
The minutes were read, approved and passed as a correct record with minor corrections
There were no matters arising from the previous meeting.
The topic of the Day was presented by FrPontianoMulenga on consecrated life. This was meant to serve as input since the year has been dedicated to those living a life of consecration. The major highlights of the topic was the difference between Religious vows and a charism.
It was also emphasised that this year calls us to look to the past with gratitude, live the present with passion, and thus embrace the future, it is not meant to lure prospective candidates into the congregations.
Bishop’s Word

  • Chrism Mass will be held on the 31st March 2015 at 5:00pm (St Ignatius Cathedral)  . The Mass will be preceded by a moment of reflection at the Bishop’s House at 3:30pm. All priest are invited to the Bishop’s House for supper after Mass
  • Compilation of the statistics is almost complete and will be distributed soon
  • Fr Carlos has email resource material for the Missionary Childhood for use during lent.
  • The 13th of June is the date set for the priestly ordination of the two deacons at All Souls Mission Binga
  • A Benedictine Priest,Fr Richard will be the retreat Master  at this year’s priests’ retreat in Dete followed by the Presbyterymeeting on 27-28 April 2015.
  • The Apostolic Nuncio to Zimbabwe His Excellence Archbishop MarekZalewski will be joining us at this year’s pilgrimage walk (Maria Unchena)
  • There will be a Diocesan Pastoral Council Meeting on the 14th March 2015
  • The Diocesan Synod document is being finalised.
  • A commission o six members has been appointed and is scheduled to meet on the 28th March 2015. These include FrsLinos and Mgcini, Srs Michael Majahana and TeclarMunkuli, Mr.TirivatyiMhangaraiand Mrs Lorraine Mahlangu
  • FrMgciniMoyo will be going for studies (Catechesis) in Rome (2015-2017) and will be leaving in June this year
  • The Child protection Act has not yet been signed by the Bishops. There will be copies available afterwards. There will be a delegation coming to conduct a workshop for responsible authorities (such schools heads) at a date to be advised.


    • Please note the forthcoming courses at Chimuniko Pastoral Centre: Catechists (by FrMgcini) Preachers’ Course (by Fr Keto)
    • There will be Acies ceremony (legion of Mary) at St Ignatius Cathedral on the 21st March 2015 all priests are invited.
    • The next meeting will be at the Bishop’s House on theand the recollection master will be Fr Frias Nemesio and on Lumano will be on standby.

Brief News

  • ¨ MARIST BROTHERS HIGH: Marist Brothers Secondary School turned into Marist Brothers High since the beginning of the year 2015 with the first enrolment of 29 “A” Level students in the following fields; 7 for Sciences, 10 for Commercials while 12 are for Arts. Currently the school if offering the following subjects for the Sciences - Mathematics, Biology , Physics and Chemistry and for the Commercials - Mathematics, Accounts, Business Studies , and Geography and  for the Arts – Geography, Ndebele, Literature in English, Divinity and History.Marist Brothers High is a Catholic institution under the administration of an International Religious congregation called Marist Brothers (FMS).


  • St Patrick’s Hospital:  On the 5th of May 2015 the Diocese and St Patrick’s Hospital staff will witness the official opening of the Rehabilitation department equipped with state of the art equipment; the maternity wing; the new reception wing. The hospital will also officially introduce the gym, aerobics and fitness training classes. Qualified personnel is already in place to  offer expert training.
    Soon to come is karate as well as weight lifting. These activities will be open to the community.  For further information readers should contact the hospital administration.
  • Maria Unchena Pilgrimage Walk will be held on the 30th of May 2015. The diocese will play host to the Apostolic Nuncio to Zimbabwe His Excellence Archbishop MarekZalewski who will join in the 15 km walk from St Ignatius cathedral to the diocesan shrine at St Mary’s Mission, Lukosi.                                                          The Nuncio will on the following day also preside over the Eucharistic celebration at the Cathedral as the Church Celebrates Trinity Sunday.
  • Following the Eucharistic celebration to mark the launch of the Year of Consecrated life at the Cathedral, PRAYER CARDS (for the year of consecrated life) have since been distributed to all the parishes in the diocese. All parishes are being encouraged to make use of them to pray for the Religious, be it at Mass or any other gathering at the parish.
  • The Daughters of Calvary Religious congregation managed to send a delegate (Sr Angeline Munkuli) for the International Congress for Trainers in Consecrated Life in Rome. The event which was themed ’LIVING IN CHRIST ACCORDING TO THE FORM OF LIFE OF THE GOSPEL’ took place on the 7TH– 11 April 2015  
  • Fr MgciniMoyo will be going to Rome in June for studies. May God grant him the necessary grace to excel in his studies
  • St George’s Parish celebrated 53rd anniversary on the 25th of April 2015
  • We wish to express our condolences to Sr. OtiliaNyoni who lost her brother  Mr Peter Nyoni recently,and  to FrMgciniMoyo who lost his uncle Mr. Johannes Moyo on the 21 of April 2015.

Obituary (Mother Cecilia)

Mother Cecilia was born on 29 March 1926 in Spain in a place called Navasram Pamplona. She comes from the same Region of St Ignatius of Loyola. She was baptized on 5TH OF April 1926.
There were 3 children in her family 2 girls and 1 boy. Her father was called Demetrio Agurirre and her mother was called CerizaAgurirre
She entered Religious life in 1944 and became a post student on 25 March 1944 in Burgos with Daughters of Calvary. Did 1st profession on 22 May 1947.
In 1950 the first group of Spanish Sisters arrived at St Mary’s on 10 October and Mother Cecilia was one of them. She was 24rys and a junior sister. In 1951-1953 she studied teachers training in S.A at Mariamhill after which she came to teach at St Mary’s. In 1954 she made her final profession in St Mary’s saying totally for Christ forever.
In 1955-67 she was chosen to be a delegate superior for the Spanish sisters in Zimbabwe. 1969 first African Sister professed Sr. Josephine Sikapila , Sr. Christina MahlanguSr.MagdaleneNehwati.
In 1970-1982 at a special chapter she was chosen to be a General Superior for the congregation. She was a General Superior for 12 years. During this time she faced problems. The “simanjemanje” entered the Converts after Vatican II 1965 Council.
After completing her office as General she came back to Zimbabwe and worked in the Bishops office after Kariyangwe.
In 1993 she was chosen delegate superior for Zimbabwe. After thet she worked tirelessly in the Bishops office typing the famous Bulletins of Bishop Prieto which gave news about the Diocese. She helped Fr. Garcia with food distribution for years in the Holy Family Parish and served as the sacristan of that Parish. She also took care of Bishops House Library and Archives of both the Diocese of Hwange and Gokwe.
For us the Daughters of Calvary she was a mother and a formator per se . She taught by her life example. She is the founder of this Province.
We are quite certain she prays for each one of us.     

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