Wednesday, 22 April 2015


Yes, from 13th to 16th April 2015 all of us, Comboni Missionary Sisters in Zambia, gathered in the Provincial House, Makeni, Lusaka, for the annual Provincial Assembly which, this year, was enriched by the presence of Sr. Luzia Premoli, our General Superior from Rome.
The theme which led us through the entire Assembly was:
By bringing to mind the “regenerating touch of God” we wanted to highlight the action of God in all people: in those we are able to reach, to teach, to train, to accompany, to console, to guide, to befriend.Indeed, God’s revitalizing, regenerating, life-giving touch reaches to many, through us, through
  • the values we share,
  • the simple lifestyle we live,
  •  the friendships we cultivate,
  • the wounds we cure,
  • through the listening heart we avail,
  •  the managerial tasks or house chores we carry out...
  • through everything we do - to the least of these brothers and sisters of mine - he life and love of God reaches out.
We reflected also that, the regenerating touch of God refers also to God’s loving, renewing action in each one of us and in our communities. In as much as we recognize the dead areas of our life-the dry parts within us- we have possibilities of “regeneration”, through God’s touch, not through our own healing power. The Risen-living- Christ we are celebrating this season calls us to let God’s Spirit touch us. The regeneration we so much long for others is the regeneration God so much long for us, his missionaries, his apostles.

The constant invitation we receive is to let God regenerate us so that we may let that same regenerating power go out to others, those near us -in our houses- and those in the local communities we live, in the schools, in the offices, in the villages or in the parishes where we encounter God’s “little ones”.

Still, luckily, God’s grace does not depend on our “being regenerated” or on our “being whole”. The mission is God’s, and that is a consolation. That is the emphasis the reflection on mission today is highlighting.

Yes, we are collaborators of God in His mission. We are people who want God’s mission to succeed. We are people who want God’s will to prevail even above our little will, our little desires. And so we are pilgrims on that journey. 

The Comboni Missionary Sisters

working in Zambia

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

23rd Day of prayer for the Martyrs

Today, anniversary of the assassination of Oscar Romero, Archbishop of San Salvador, is a day of prayer and fasting, to remember all the Missionary Martyrs. From 1980 until today 1.062 people have lost their life… women and men who have lived their faith in spite of everything, up to the end.

Oscar Romero (August 15, 1917 – March 24, 1980), a Catholic priest in El Salvador, become Archbishop of San Salvador in 1977. After witnessing violation of human right, he started speaking on behalf of the poor and the victims of injustice and oppression. This brought conflicts both with the Government of the country and with the Catholic Church. After publicly denouncing the US military support for the government of El Salvador, and challenging the soldiers asking them to disobey orders to fire innocent civilians, Archbishop Oscar Romero was shot dead while celebrating Mass, on 24th March 1980.

                             The Prayer of Oscar Romero
It helps, now and then, to step back and to take the long view.
The kingdom is not only beyond our effort,
it is even beyond our vision.
We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction
of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work.

Nothing we do is complete,
which is another way to say that
the Kingdom always lies beyond us.

No statement says all that should be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith.
No confession brings perfection.
No pastoral visit brings wholeness.
No program accomplishes the church’s mission.
No set of goals and objectives includes everything.

This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted,
knowing that they hold future promises.

We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities.
We cannot do everything,
and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that.

This enables us to do something, and to do it very well.
It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning,
a step along the way,
an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and to do the rest.
We may never see the end results
But that is the difference
between the master builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders,
ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future that is not our own.
  (Archbishop Oscar Romero)

Monday, 16 March 2015

Microphone to a young lady!!!!!



"I am Jacinta, a 24 years old, catholic young lady living in a slum of Lusaka, Zambia.
Jacinta with Sr. Patrizia
Yes, I am a young woman called by God to serve Him and others while I am still young, one of the Youth. I feel called to share God’s love especially with my fellow youth, at the parish and in the community at large. I try to encourage them to be active in sharing God’s gifts they have received and to be passionate with courage and confidence in witnessing God’s love to all.
To be a youth, today, in a world that is moving so fast, it is not easy. Many youth have engaged themselves in various activities that get them away from dignity, respect for one’s life and happiness. Here in the compound, many young people are spending their days as drunker, using drugs, sexually abusing each other and getting involved in illegal activities. Early marriages are still a hard reality around here. Girls are forced to marry when still very young, in order to support, somehow, the family. I have witnessed girls being forced into marriage because their parents could not afford to pay school for them. They did not complete their educational journey, remaining almost illiterate. Young girls are getting pregnant at the age of 14, becoming mothers while they are not yet mature for this. As a result, they are also regarded as burden in the family and society.
Youth of Zambia
When I think about all this, my heart breaks. I am hurt because the future leaders of this world are losing the chance to be better and to do better.
I feel, and believe, something can still be done to help and assist my fellow friends. It is not too late and it will never be!
Personally, I spend time with my friends; I observe them, listen to them and talk with them, especially with young girls. Sometimes, I question them on their living and I ask them why to be engaged with things that do not bring good to their lives. They think that there is nothing else to do: there are no alternatives, no jobs, no financial support to go to school, no recreational places and facilities to play or interact with.
Young people need a safe space, which offers opportunities in order to grow healthy and serene. Around here, it is rare to see groups of youth playing together, or to find organized activities for us.
The establishing of a Youth Center will help us a lot, will help especially young girls to reduce their exposure, to live healthy interaction and socialization, to gain good inputs for their lives and to strengthen their education, at all levels.
Tomorrow's forest
I believe it would be an advantage also for physically handicapped youth, like me, who need integration in society. I am sharing and giving example of myself because I face many challenges. I need to exercise my muscles and bones in order to move around; in the community, there are no facilities since infrastructures, roads, transport and people as well are very poor. Physically challenged people need facilities at infrastructure level, medical support, but also a place where to receive positive thinking, mental, emotional and spiritual support.
I will continue praying for the great change needed in my community, which will help us all. I will continue dreaming a parish and a community with youths who are active, living in a positive way and passionately, because I do believe that “today’s young plants are tomorrow’s forest!
(Jacinta Banda, St. Monica Parish, Lusaka, Zambia)

Sunday, 15 March 2015

184 YEARS AGO...

.... St. Daniel Comboni was born in little village, Limone, in Italy.
Yes, it was 15th March 1831 and today, we remember him in a very special way....

"I only have one life to consecrate for the salvation of Africa...
I wish I had thousand lives for such a purpose..."

Let us ask him to intercede for us, too: may we offer our life to the Lord and to humanity with the same passion, fidelity, enthusiasm, determination and radicality.


Sunday, 8 February 2015

St. Josephine Bakhita's Day

Bakhita, a survivor of human trafficking.
St. Josephine Bakhita was born in southern Sudan sometimes around 1869. As a young girl, she was kidnapped and sold into slavery. Sold and resold in the markets of El Obeid and Khartoum, she was treated brutally by her captors. She did not remember the name she was given by her parents. Bakhita, which means “fortunate one,” was the name given to her by her kidnappers. 

In 1883, she was bought by an Italian diplomat who sent her to Italy to work as a maid for the daughter of a family friend studying with the Canossian Daughters of Charity. It was there that Bakhita came to know about God whom “she had experienced in her heart without knowing” who God was. In 1890, she was baptized and received the name Josephine.

Later, the Italian family came to take their “property” back to Africa. Josephine expressed her desire to stay. When the family insisted for her to go, she remained firm, later writing: “I am sure the Lord gave me strength at that moment.” With the support of the superior of the Canossian Sisters and the Cardinal of Venice, she won her freedom and later entered the novitiate. For the next 50 years she lived a life of prayer and service as a Canossian Sister before her death in 1947.

St. Josephine was canonized in 2000. She is the the patron saint of kidnapped and trafficked persons.

                            OF PRAYER AND AWARENESS
"In the eyes of God, each human being is a free person, whether girl, boy, woman or man
and is destined to exist for the good of all in equality and fraternity."
 Modern slavery, in terms of "human trafficking, forced labor and prostitution,
 organ trafficking, and any relationship 
that fails to respect the fundamental conviction that all people are equal 
and have the same freedom and dignity
 is a crime against humanity."
 (Faith Leaders' Universal Declaration Against Slavery, Vatican City, Dec. 2, 2014)

Millions of people today – children, women and men of all ages – are deprived of freedom and
are forced to live in conditions akin to slavery. For those who cry out –usually in silence – for liberation, St Josephine Bakhita is an exemplary witness of hope. Victims and advocates alike could do no better than be inspired by her life and entrust our efforts to her intercession”.
The Holy Father invites us all to recognize that we are facing a global phenomenon which exceeds the competence of any one community or country.

 In order to eliminate it, we need a mobilization
comparable in size to that of the phenomenon itself”. 

The International Day against Human Trafficking constitutes
 “a mobilization of awareness and prayer on a global scale. 
This awareness must expand and extend to the very depths of this evil and its farthest reaches
… from awareness to prayer … 

from prayer to solidarity … 
and from solidarity to concerted action, 
until slavery and trafficking are no more”. (Cardinal Turkson)

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