Two new priests in the Diocese of Manzini

Last Saturday the diocese of Manzini gathered at the Cathedral to celebrate the ordination of two new priests: Zweli Ngwenya and Ncamiso Vilakati.

It was more than a local event. There were more than forty priests present at the celebration. Half of them had arrived from different dioceses of South Africa. More than that. Looking a the countries of origin there were Swazi, South African, Rwandan, Irish, Italian, Polish, Vietnamese and, of course, an Argentinean Bishop. It was a Church event. 

Both Fr Ngwenya and Fr Vilakati joined the seminary in 2005 and, as I shared at the beginning of the homily, from that day on, people had always asked: when are you going to be ordained? Particularly in the last few months as they had been ordained deacons a year ago and everyone was looking forward to their ordination to the priesthood.

During the homily I underlined three elements taken from the readings chosen by the "priests-to-be", three pillars on which to build:
"1. Remember you have been called. The second reading reminds us that no one chooses this service for himself but it is entrusted to us. Make sure you are always one with the One who called you. Be one in prayer asking the Lord to guide you daily.

2. We are sinners (and not angels) among sinners. It should never happen to you that you do not find time to celebrate the sacrament of reconciliation in your own lives and to be available to celebrate it with the people entrusted to you. As we have seen in our pilgrimages, they do want to hear said to them: 'your sins are forgiven'

3. You are being sent and sent to be shepherds. The Catholic Church arrived in Swaziland 100 years' ago. Four Servants of Mary were the first ones. Soon after that one was killed. Then the first world war started. They could not receive more missionaries. Still, nothing stopped them. On that passion, on that faith, on that conviction our diocese is built. You are now the ones to continue what others have started."

At the end of the celebration we continued on the other side of the road with lunch, music and gifts for the newly ordained priests.

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Bishop of the Diocese of Manzini (Swaziland)

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