Thursday, November 28, 2019
Time flew very fast since we received Fr. Tesfaye Tadesse (in the picture) and Fr. Alcides Costa in Juba for the Celebration of the Centenary of Faith of the Archdiocese and their official visit to the province from 31st October to 21st November. The programme was quite tight and rich of many encounters.
On Saturday 2, Fr. Tesfaye presided mass in Bro. Augusto Lopeta Memorial Secondary School where the St. Martin De Porres Brothers renewed their religious vows. The school is run by them. After mass Fr. Tesfaye and Fr. Alcides visited the Good Shepherd Peace Center, which is just few meters from the school, run by Religious Association of South Sudan. Then they proceeded to celebrate mass of the commemoration of the departed soul with the comboni family and some congregation founded by Bishop Mazzoldi (Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, St. Martin de Porres Brothers, Apostles of Jesus), at the cemetery of Rajaf where some of our confreres, like Fr. Angelo Medici, Fr. Adot Albino, and others are buried.
On Sunday 3, they visited the UN Camp that protects the Nuer civilians, about 30.000 of them, and celebrated in two of the four chapels. Then, they left by road to visit some communities: Talì, Yirol and Mapuordit. They ended up in Rumbek to pick a flight back to Juba. Roads were quite bumpy and scarring especially when after leaving Yirol they encountered part of the road flooded and cars stuck in the water. They had also to cross a distance on foot. Confreres welcomed them joyfully and generously. Fr Tesfaye and Fr Alcides offered their ear to listen and their heart to be in solidarity with each one. They visited the community of the pre-postulancy in Moroyok, Juba. Then the community of Wau with our Comboni parish, the cathedral, the diocesan hospital, St. Daniel Comboni, Catholic Health Training Institute and the other institutions. They were welcomed by a group of pastoral agents from St. Daniel Comboni. They dressed them with a typical dress and flowers. A dove was given to each of them to free as a sign of peace. They marched from the airport to the parish on foot accompanied by the parish group and those who joined them along the road.
On Sunday 17 they celebrated two masses: one in the cathedral and the other in our parish of St. Daniel Comboni. During their final days, they had the chance to meet Sr. Luigina Coccia and Sr. Eulalia Capdevila and share about venues of collaboration and communion in the name of the common charism of St Daniel Comboni. They also meet with Archbishop Paolino Lukudo Loro and visited several places of Juba, such as The Catholic University, St. Paul Major diocesan Seminary where they celebrated mass with the teaching staffs and the seminarians.
The visit was successful. Confreres are grateful for the closeness shown by Fr. Tesfaye and Fr. Alcides, encouragement and guidance. Due to the nature of the country they were unable to visit some communities. The province looks forward to the next visit. Fr. Jeremias dos Santos Martins has in fact in plan to visit the province within the year 2020.