It was for me a celebration of many "firsts".
- It was the first I was able to accept the invitation to ordain some of my Consolata Missionaries' confreres,
- the first time I was ordaining four deacons in one celebration and
- the first time I was not doing it in Zulu...
But the main one was not about me.
Last Saturday, we gathered at St Martin the Porres' parish in Woodlands (Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu - Natal) for the ordination to the deaconate of four Consolata Missionaries from Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia. From left:
- Mrosso Patrick Francis IMC (from Tanzania)
- Onyango Samuel Francis IMC (from Kenya)
- Mwanake Josephat Mwendwa IMC (from Kenya)
- Kidane Ashuro Abebe IMC (from Ethiopia)
Two of them, Onyango and Mwanake spent a couple of months in the Vicariate of Ingwavuma where they visited all the parishes, got familiar with the history and present of the area and then prepared a very good report to help our Missionaries discern a possible future presence.
The celebration was very well prepared. When being called, each one of them was introduced to the parish community not only by their names but sharing also on their country of origin, their families and their year of service.
The offertory included the globe, the icons of Our Lady Consolata and Joseph Allamano, a reminder of a missionary call to proclaim good news in the whole world.
At the end of the Mass we asked God's blessings upon all those who journeyed with them for the last 10 years, from the time they joined the seminary in their countries.
If the first fruits are an indication of the future harvest, we must be grateful to God for such a gift.