Monthly Newsletter of the Comboni Missionaries of the Heart of Jesus




1. Appointments

1.1. New Comboni Bishop

The Holy Father has chosen another Comboni Missionary to the Order of Bishops, not for a missionary diocese this time but for the service in the Roman Curia: Fr. Miguel Angel Ayuso Guixot, who for several years has been the Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue. The date of his ordination will be made known at a later date.

1.2. General Treasury

1.2.1. The GC has appointed for three years, from 1-2-2016, as a member of the General Treasury, and replacing Fr. Torquato Paolucci, Bro. Guillermo Casas Rosell (C) and confirms the appointment of Bro. Raniero Iacomella for another three years.

1.2.2. The GC appoints as a member of the Council for Finance, for three years, from 1-2-2016, Fr. Paolo Latorre, as representative of APDESAM, replacing Fr. Luigi Gabaglio.

1.2.3. The GC heartily thanks both Fr. Torquato Paolucci and Fr. Luigi Gabaglio for the service they so generously rendered to the Institute for the past three years.

1.2.4. The GC confirms the appointment for another three years, from 13-3-2016, of the two internal auditors of the accounts of the General Direction, Fr. Manuel Ferreira Horta and Fr. Mario Locatelli and thanks them for the promptness and professionalism of their service.

1.2.5. As external auditor of the accounts of the General Direction, the GC has decided to employ the services of Dr. Antonio Fiorilli, in accordance with the proposal of the General Treasury.

1.3. Formators

1.3.1. The GC appoints Fr. Danilo Cimitan as formator ad interim of the scholasticate of São Paulo (BR) as from 1-2-2016.

1.3.2. The GC appoints Fr. Enzo Bellucco as formator of the scholasticate of Kinshasa (CN) as from 1-6-2016.

1.3.3. The GC appoints Fr. Tomás Herreros Baroja as superior of the scholasticate of Lima (PE) as from 1-2-2016.

1.3.4. The GC appoints Fr. Elías Arroyo Román as superior of the scholasticate of São Paulo (BR) as from 1-2-2016.

2. Guide for the implementation of the Chapter

During this Consulta the GC has completed the drafting of the Guide. As soon as the translations are ready, the text will be sent to all circumscriptions by email with the date of 15 March, 2016. The GC hopes that the Guide may assist all the confreres not only to read and comprehend the Chapter Acts but above all to plan both personal and communitarian witness of our living the joy of the Gospel.

3. Mi.s.n.a.

We give below the final note of 22 December 2015, of Fr. Gottardo Pasqualetti, President of the Mi.s.n.a. Social Enterprise:

Mi.s.n.a. is closing. This agency has carried out a service of information whose main characteristic has been that of basing its reports on first-hand testimonies gathered from correspondents – especially missionaries – present in the places where the reported facts took place.

The Missionary Institutes that promoted and sustained it for eighteen years (1997-2015), after a long period of financial and management difficulties, reached the painful decision to end its activities as from 31 December.

The interventions made from time to time did not provide a lasting solution and no other feasible possibilities were foreseen.

Mi.s.n.a. wishes to thank all those who, during these years of activity collaborated in many different ways to the success of such an esteemed and appreciated service.

4. Continental Brothers’ Reference person

Following the indications of the XVIII General Chapter, each continent is to have a Brother as animator and reference person for the Brothers who will take part in the continental assemblies of Circumscription Superiors.

The Guide to the implementation of the Chapter states that that this is to be carried out before the end of June, 2017. Accordingly, the GC reminds the Circumscription Superiors to begin the process for the election of a Brother as they see fit while including a phase of consultation among the Brothers of the continent.

5. Meeting of the Comboni Family in Carraia

On 23 January last, the General Councils of the three Comboni Institutes (CMS, CSMI, MCCJ) met together with the representative of the Comboni Lay Missionaries, Mr. Alberto de la Portilla. Besides sharing extensively about the situation of our Institutes, the theme of mercy was tackled as well as the coordination of various lay groups that take their inspiration from the Comboni charism.

6. Comboni Course for the Elderly, 2016

The second edition of the Comboni Course for the Elderly is planned for the eight weeks running from Sunday 4 September to Sunday 30 October of this year. The Course will be held at the OGF centre of the Generalate in Rome. Its purpose is to offer help to live one’s old age in serenity and fruitfulness. It is open to confreres who are 70 or more years of age whose psychological and physical condition would allow them to benefit from this ongoing formation initiative. Those wishing to enrol should contact the person in charge, Fr. Siro Stocchetti, by email:

N.B.: the next edition of the Comboni renewal course for confreres between fifty and seventy years of age will be held from early January to late May, 2017.

7. Commitments and journeys of the GC

Fr. Tesfaye Tadesse

     31 January – 4 February: Madrid

     08 – 22 February: visiting some communities of the Italian Province and the Casavatore scholasticate

     24 – 26 February 2016: ACFP in Rome

     04 April – 3 May: Ethiopia

     03 – 15 May: spiritual exercises and assembly in Manila

Fr. Jeremias dos Santos Martins

     08 – 20 February: visiting the communities of the Generalate

     07 – 18 April: in Portugal for spiritual exercises

     10 – 25 May: visiting Egypt

Fr. Bustos Juárez Rogelio

     15 April – 7 May: London

     07 – 24 May: Mexico

Fr. Ciuciulla Pietro

     08 – 28 February: visiting the Province of Italy and the Casavatore scholasticate

     25 March – 20 April: visiting the Province of Congo

     24 April – 5 May: visiting the Delegation of Chad

Bro. Lamana Cónsola Alberto

     31 January – 29 February: in Spain

     29 February – 4 March: London attending the European Continental Meeting.

Perpetual professions

Sc. Mabuluki Bakwa Nickel (CN)              Isiro (RDC)         26/12/2015

Sc. Fene-Fene Santime Augustin (CN)   Isiro (RDC)         26/12/2015

Holy Redeemer Guild

February       01 – 15 C             16 – 28 EGSD

March            01 – 07 CO          08 – 15 E                  16 – 31 DSP

Prayer intentions

February – That, as we conclude the Year of Consecrated Life, we may remain faithful to the gift received and feel the need to renew every day the joy of the gift of ourselves to Christ for the Mission. Lord hear us.

March – That the Missionaries of Mercy, sent out into the world by Pope Francis, may be welcomed as a living sign of the Father who welcomes all who seek his forgiveness. Lord hear us.


Assembly and retreat

Around seventy confreres working in Brazil met together from 13 to 20 January in the “Sagrada Familia” Formation Centre in Sao Paolo, for their annual retreat and a short Assembly which had as its main objective the planning of the Action Programme for the coming six years. The Plan, to be approved in the General Assembly next September, as stated by the Provincial, Fr. Alcides Costa, will develop four priorities: socio-environmental areas, indigenous pastoral work, Afro pastoral work, peripheries of human rights, mission and vocations promotion.

This was not the first time the Comboni Missionaries chose this location to meet together, situated, as it is, in a place easily reached by those coming from the twelve Brazilian states where they are scattered: Parana, Sao Paolo, Minas Gerais, Espírito Santo, Bahia, Ceará, Maranhão, Paraíba, Rondônia, Amazonas and Roraima.


Fr. Miguel Ángel Ayuso appointed Bishop

On 29 January, 2016, Pope Francis appointed Comboni Missionary Fr. Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot, Titular Bishop of Luperciana (an ancient episcopal see in Tunisia).

Since 2012, Msgr. Ayuso has been Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue in Rome, a post to which he was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI.

Msgr. Ayuso worked as a missionary in Khartoum and in Cairo where he taught Islamology. He returned to Italy in 2002 and taught at the Pontifical Institute for Arabic and Islamic Studies in Rome, where for some years (until 2012), he was also Principal.

Msgr. Ayuso has chaired various meetings for inter-religious dialogue in Africa (Egypt, Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Mozambique) and has published books and articles in international magazines.


The missionary magazine “Kontinente”

The German missionary magazine “Kontinente” celebrated its 50th anniversary on 20 January in the city of Cologne. Attending the ceremony, representing the German-speaking province (DSP), were the Comboni Missionaries Fr. Anton Schneider, Media Coordinator in the DSP, and Fr. Reinhold Baumann, Managing Editor of the Comboni Insert that is regularly published in the magazine “Kontinente”.

The magazine was founded by thirteen missionary Institutes in 1966, in Germany, to be a voice for the poor countries of the southern hemisphere and to express the richness of the Christian life in the different cultures.

Today, the Institutes responsible for the publication of “Kontinente” are twenty-seven. The magazine is published in two languages, German and Dutch, with a total circulation of 200,000 copies.


Independent Film Festival at Comboni College Khartoum

On 27 January, Comboni College had the privilege of hosting the closing ceremony of the 3rd Sudan Independent Film Festival (SIFF), one of the greatest cultural events of the country. The Festival presented 91 films from 35 different countries in three different cities: Khartoum, Bahri and Omdurman. The best Sudanese Film received the “Black Elephant” Award in the presence of the Minister of Culture and the Ambassadors of Switzerland and Palestine. The theme of the festival was “cultural resistance”. In his speech, the Director of Sudan Film Factory, Mr. Talal Afifi, a former student of Comboni College Khartoum, spoke about the importance of CCK in the formation of a Sudanese leadership sensitive to culture and open to diversity. Fr. Jorge Naranjo, General Administrator of Comboni College of Science and Technology (CCST), presented the festival to the guests CCK and CCST as a realization of Comboni´s Plan.

CCST was among the partners that supported Sudan Film Factory in the organization of the festival and the CCK-Secondary School offered its wonderful courtyard for the closing ceremony that was attended by 1,000 people, mainly young Sudanese. The event had a great impact in the Sudanese media and was a privileged occasion to share our charism and service with society. It was also a way of manifesting that educational institutions are not islands but are meant to interact with society in a dynamism of mutual enrichment.


Mundo Negro Prize for Fraternity

Each year, the Comboni magazine “Mundo Negro” organises the “Encounter Africa, Anthropology and Mission” meeting during which the “Mundo Negro Prize for Fraternity” is presented to one or more people who distinguished themselves for their activities in connection with the African continent. This year’s encounter, – number XXVIII – to be held in Madrid from 5 to 7 February, will focus on the theme “Dreams of Peace”. Fr. Jaime Calvera, Director of Mundo Negro, and Fr. Ramón Eguíluz, the Provincial of Spain, will present the prize for 2015 to Ugandan Victor Ochen, a well-known human rights activist and founder of “African Youth Initiative Network”. He will give his testimony speaking on the theme “Peace as a reality”.

The encounter will conclude with a Eucharistic celebration at the chapel of the Comboni house in Madrid. The African choir Karibu will lead the singing.


Acse celebrates its Twentieth Anniversary

On 28 October last, there occurred the twentieth anniversary of establishing the Acse into an association, “which assumed as its principal objective – as stated in the statutes – to continue the decades-long experience carried out under different auspices in Rome (1969) and in other parts of Italy (Milan), for the benefit of the less-advantaged immigrants and extra-communitarian prisoners” (art. 3). The experience has been described as “a ground-breaking initiative and a school for social operatives which, in turn, inspired other similar initiatives”. Subsequently, other organisations came into being: Caritas, the Community of St. Egidio and the Astalli Centre, as evangelical expressions of the inventiveness of charity (St. John Paul II).

The acts of constitution were signed by eleven people, six of whom are still with us and five who are now still associates. Some of the names: Fr. Bresciani, Fr. Marra, Fr. Milani, Sr. Calabria, two Scalabrini Sisters and five lay-people.

It is hoped that Acse will succeed in continually improving its commitments for the benefit of immigrants in the new reality of society and immigration.

New Assembly and new Executive Council

On 12 December 2015, the Assembly of Associates was held at the headquarters of Acse in Roma. As from 19 September 2015, the Association, as desired by the Associates, was run by an executive council made up of two Comboni Missionaries and Two Comboni Sisters. The Assembly had mandated the Executive Council to set up a commission of male and female Comboni Missionaries and lay-people to verify the situation of Acse, prepare a new Assembly and present 3 lay-people for election to the Executive Council. The Assembly, which lasted more than two hours, took place in an atmosphere of openness and positivity. Three councillors were elected resulting in the following membership: Fr. Venanzio Milani, President; Sr. Maria Rosa Venturelli, Vice-president; Sabino Minervini, Secretary; Analita Colungi, Treasurer; Fr. Giovanni Munari, Sr. Rosangela Fasto, Flavien Nduwumuremyi, Councillors. We wish them all every success.

Spiritual exercises in Limone 2016

09 – 17 March

20 – 28 April

15 – 23 June

Directed retreats

Fr. Pierpaolo Monella, mccj

A personalised journey of prayer and reflection in the light of our missionary experience and St. Daniel Comboni (max. 8 people)

17 – 23 July (lunch)

Preached retreats

Fr. Teresino Serra, mccj

Theme: In mission as Samaritans. Loving others’ pain.

11 – 17 September (lunch)

Preached retreats

Fr. Danilo Castello, mccj

Theme: The experience of God and passion for the mission. Comboni and his Gospel of Mercy.

NB: All retreats start in the evening and end in the mornings of the dates shown, except for the two preached retreats.


New web-site launched

We wish to inform the confreres of the recent launch of the new website for the Province: This new website is in addition to our existing website – – which is looked after by Paul Felix, from the Mission Promotion Office in Leeds.

We are much indebted to Fr. Carmine Curci for his valued and invaluable assistance in preparing material for the new website, which he will look after on an on-going basis, in addition to his work in editing the SouthWorld website.


New Vocations and Mission Promotion Centre

On Sunday January 3, 2016, Fr. John Baptist Keraryo Opargiw, Secretary General of Formation, presided over the ceremony for the official opening and blessing of the new premises of the Vocations and Mission Promotion Centre at Kalikiliki in the eastern outskirts of Lusaka, Zambia. The ceremony was attended by Fr. Enrico Colleoni, Vice-Provincial Superior of Malawi/Zambia, all the confreres in the Lusaka area and the Comboni Sisters. Also present for the occasion was the Parish Priest of St. Augustine Catholic Parish, Kalikiliki, with a small group of Christians. In his homily, Fr. John Baptist encouraged the confreres of the new community to become a cenacle of Apostles capable of living in deep communion, to welcome the youth and accompany them in their vocational discernment. Fr. Enrico, in his introductory speech, emphasised the value of community life.

The purpose of the new community, whose members are Fr. Theophile Bessan and Bro. Cyprien Adigbo Komlan, is three-fold: vocations promotion, mission promotion and hospitality to confreres. Originally, the plot on which the new house has been built was bought and intended as a possible site for a new inserted scholasticate in the periphery of Lusaka. However, this did not materialize and the Province decided to use the place as a multi-purpose Mission Centre.


Visit of the Secretary General of Formation to Mozambique

The Secretary General of Formation (SGF), Fr. John Baptist Keraryo Opargiw, paid an official visit to Mozambique from January 10 to 20, 2016. The visit was short but very intense. In those few days, Fr. John Baptist managed to visit the communities of Maputo, Matola, Nampula Novitiate, Nampula Pre-postulancy, Nampula-Mwahivire, Carapira, Namapa, Anchilo and Alua.

In his report to the Provincial Council of Mozambique the SGF thanks the Provincial Superior, Fr. José Luis Rodríquez Lopez, and all the confreres for their hospitality and friendship. The SGF further addresses himself to the confreres engaged in vocations promotion and formation ministry, thanking them for their dedicated service and encouraging them to improve the quality of their service through specific preparation for formators, good selection of candidates and assiduous vocational discernment and accompaniment. Mozambique is at present experiencing a vocations boom (11 pre-postulants, 23 postulants, 15 novices, 3 scholastics) and this is indeed an invitation and a challenge for us as an Institute to invest well in terms of competent personnel and adequate infrastructures.


Provincial Assembly 2016

The provincial Assembly took place in Lomé from 18 to 22 January on the theme “Journeying with the Church, the Institute and the Province”. The participation of almost all the confreres, the brotherhood and the frank and sincere dialogue created a constructive climate of commitment and discernment.

The first day, on the theme of Journeying with the Church, was dedicated to the Synod on the Family and the reflection proposed by Msgr. Jacques Longa, Bishop of Kara and Synod Father, representing the Episcopal Conference of Togo. Msgr. Longa helped us to enter into the heart of the Synod journey and to make our own the pastoral developments proposed for the family.

The morning of the second day began with Mass, the Provincial Superior presiding. The theme Journeying with the Institute focussed on the XVIII General Chapter. As the Mass ended, the Provincial presented each confrere with a copy of the Chapter Acts.

The Provincial first explained the basic inspiration of the Chapter journey, the exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, before going on to speak of the Chapter Acts. This was followed by an interesting debate during which a number of confreres expressed their impressions and expectations after the Chapter.

The third stage of the Assembly, Journeying with the Province, covered our life through the various secretariats and the report of the Provincial and his Council. The various interventions were followed by an open debate which brought us to review many aspects of our missionary work as we revisited the Six-year Plan (2011-2016) now coming to an end, in view of the new plan.

These were days of intense work, lived deeply, during which each confrere sought to give his contribution for the growth of the Province in the three countries in which we are present.

Let us pray for our beloved dead

THE MOTHERS: Carmen, of Fr. José Rafael Pérez Moreno (E), Teresa, of Fr. Nicolás Martín Ramírez Falcón (M).

THE BROTHERS: Msgr. Felice, of Fr. Umberto Rainoldi (I); Sebastião António, of Fr. Arlindo Ferreira Pinto (C); Manuel Fernando, of Fr. Jerónimo Alberto Vieira da Costa (P); Mauro, of Fr. Tito Giuntoli (I); Joaquim, of Fr. Manuel António Da Silva Machado (A); Amadeo, of Fr. Rodolfo Cipollone (ET).

THE SISTERS: Zemira, of Fr. Lodovico Bonomi (BR); Maria, of Fr. Emilio Zanatta (I); Maricela, of Fr. Gabriel Estrada Santoyo (M).

THE COMBONI MISSIONARY SISTERS: Sr. Anna Maria Robbi; Sr. M. Adalgisa Massoletti; Sr. Valeria M. Terruzzi.

THE SECULAR COMBONI MISSIONARY: Laurieri Anna (Altamura, Bari).