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Archives August 2017

Karonga Diocese Confronts Immense Pastoral and Social Economic Challenges: News in Pictures

a) Pastoral Issues

Some times they have to walk long distances and in many cases they have to cross bridges rivers to reach the Christians. The Motto; ‘We shall go to them’ inspires them
Sunday School Children about to take porridge, the Diocese trying to meet food needs of young chidren
While many people are devoted Catholics they find it difficult to build adequate and suitable churches. This affects liturgy
Karonga Diocese and other pastoral agents have to use rented boat to minister to communities along Lake Malawi





Pastoral workers have to 
literally walk in most cases in order to reach to God’s flock. We shall go to them!

This incomplete church is being used in St Stevens. This is true with many places in the district
The youth comprise a big section of the Church. They they have great zeal for the Church and their faith. From 24th to 27th October over 1,600 young Christians in the Diocese met to discuss their role in Church and their faith

Karonga Diocese enjoys active liturgies. The newly opened St Joseph the Worker Cathedral a great source of inspiration for many faithful in the Diocese

Bishop Martin, the Clergy and Religious; men and women. Though fewer in numbers the do wonderful and difficult work ministering to all

The Diocese trains more lay leaders in order to address the issue of shortage of pastoral workers










b) Social Developmental Issues

Access to portable water is a big challenge. Many children under the age of 5 have died due to water borne diseases.


Due to negative effects of Climate change the communities in the Diocese are faced with chronic food shortages every year. The Diocese of Karonga tries to respond but can only do to some level


Maize crop the staple food heavily affected by effects of climate change ; pests and diseases
This is how some communities in the Diocese accesses water for household use in rural communities of the Diocese of Karonga. This photo was taken from Nthalire in Chitipa
Irresponsible mining in the Diocese violets peoples rights and damages their source of livelihoods.
Access to quality education especially for those in rural areas in a big challenge. There are fewer teachers, class rooms and everything. The photo shows STD 2 & 3 pupils and their class lock at Mkule Full Primary school in Nthalire
Floods and other natural disasters are common. People loose lives and property and school going children are highly affected
Navinkhula Community Welcomes Irrigation Farming

Gibson Ngwira

Members of the Navinkhula community have expressed joy over the opening of the irrigation site within their village by the Diocese of Karonga. This was expressed during the mobilization meeting conducted by Development Desk field officers in Navinkhula village last week.

The meeting was aimed at informing the communities around the irrigation scheme about the purpose of the scheme. The communities were informed that the scheme is for the Diocese of Karonga and members are there to benefit from this scheme by growing crops which would generate money for them and improve their ho

Part of the people who attended the mobilization meeting for the irrigation site at Kapoka (Navinkhula village).

usehold economy hence improving their livelihoods. However they will be asked to pay something which will be agreed upon by their committee when put in place.

The communities were very happy because of this gesture by the Diocese and said that many people around the scheme will benefit from this for the winter cropping. They said that this has never happened to them and that all along they had been using water canes which had been a problem to them to produce enough for sell in order to improve their livelihoods.

One farmer said that it will be very profitable now to venture into winter cropping with this type of irrigation now and there is a lot of readily available market locally since most of the crops are out of the season this time.

The mobilization meeting with the Navinkhula community also explained the way on how communities around are going to utilize the scheme, the selection criteria for those who are going to benefit from the scheme, use of manure and management of the solar panels for irrigation.

The communities were urged to come up with a committee that is going to oversee activities at the irrigation scheme. There are a total of 25 (14 women and 11 men) identified members for the irrigation site at Kapoka. The scheme is been developed with financial support from MISEREOR in Germany.

Women Groups Benefits from CCJP Women Mentoring Process

By Vincent Bwinga

Many women from St Ignatius Parish in Chitipa District are cerebrating the benefits from the mentoring work that the Justice and Peace Desk of Karonga Dioceses has been doing.

Since 2016, the Desk has been doing mentoring processes for women groups as an approach for enhancing women’s knowledge on their rights so that they can take a leading role in securing their rights and those of girls in their respective communities.

Mentoring session’s activities are continuously carried out by trained women mentors who are identified by the project. These women are also role models to other women. On 18 August 2017 the Desk conducted a follow up activity of mentoring sessions at Wenya Trading Centre in T/A Mwenewenya. During the activity it was revealed that since CCJP introduced the approach, adherence to women rights has improved in the area. Men have slowly began to allow their wives to participate in businesses and other economic activities.

Such a women is Vilengiwa Kayira from Limbikilani Group. Vilengiwa  said that men were taking advantage on women because of lack of awareness and forums where they could discuss issues regarding their rights, but with this approach, women are able to come together and discuss issues affecting their life and on how they can move forward.

Participants on day asked CCJP to assist them with capacity building on business management which the field officer in the parish Mr. Vincent Bwinga quickly responded that they may source a person who can train them.

The activity was organized by CCJP under the Community Managed Women Rights Advocacy Project which is funded by Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) and it was attended by 44 women from 3 VSL women groups namely, Kumbukani, Tiwone and Limbikilani.

Over 1,600 Catholic Youth Gathered for an Annual Diocesan Rally at Chaminade

By Benjamin Msowoya

Through the Youth Desk, the Diocese of Karonga has gathered over 1,600 youths at Chaminade Secondary School for their 2017 Diocesan rally.  The Youth Rally will run from 23 August to 27 August 2017.   The Youth Desk hopes that the rally will help the youth to interact, learn from each other and acquire more knowledge on Church doctrine and life skills from various presentations that have been prepared.

The theme of this year’s youth rally is “Honoring the Father’s House with my Life as Youth” (Muwukilano Watumbike Nyu

Catholic Boys and Girls Arriving for the rally

mba ya Wadada na Umoyo Wake).

Though the numbers keep increasing, so far, the numbers that are registered on 23 August, the day of arrival are as follows:

# PARISH NO. of Youth
2 ST MARYS 205
TOTAL 1,675

Fr Charles Peter Chinula, the Diocesan Social Communications Secretary, on behalf of Bishop Martin Mtumbuka presided over the opening mass on 24 August 2017.   He urged the youth to know how much worth they are as ‘temples of the Holy Spirit’ and live lives that manifest such an understanding. He also appealed to them that on top of being ambitious they should also be contented with what God has given them.

On Sunday, 27 August, the Vicar General for the Diocese of Karonga, Mons. Denis Chitete, will preside over the closing mass for the 2017 Diocesan Youth Rally.


Karonga CCJP Primary Justice CBES Hold Interface Meeting With Chiefs

By Deodatus Muriya

 The Primary Justice Project Community Based Educators in Mwenelondo area facilitated and interface meeting with village headmen in the area to discuss casebook documentation. The meeting took place on 21st August, 2017 in GVH Mwangolera.

It was noted through field monitoring conducted by CBE that some chiefs under GVH Mwangolera in Traditional Authority Kyungu were not documenting cases in the casebook. The CBEs called the chiefs for interface meeting so that they should iron out what was preventing the chiefs from completing the casebook. The meeting was attended by Development Desk Officer Mr Deodatus Muriya who represented the project coordinator in Karonga District.

According to the CBEs Chairperson for Lupembe area Mr  Daniel Mwangewo; out of 9 village headmen under GVH Mwangolera only 5 village headmen were consistently filling the casebook. Therefore, they thought it necessary to call the village headmen to a round table so that they can hear their views on why they were not filling the casebook.

In his response, Village Headman Vukoni said that casebook documentation is the duty of their secretaries who were trained by the project. Therefore he said, if casebook are not been filled then it means those secretaries are not active and they need to be replaced immediately. He further said that case documentation helps the village tribunals when they have a case because the casebook is used as a reference on how the similar case was charged in the past.

In his closing remarks the Development Desk Officer said that Primary Justice Project has special focus on women and children who are often victims of abuse in society. The programme therefore aims at strengthening local justice systems including village tribunals to effectively provide justice to the people especially women and children.  He further said that chiefs should encourage their secretaries to document cases in the case book and if they have any challenge CBEs are always there to help them.  The project is funded by DFID through Lilongwe CCJP.

Monsignor Denis Chitete Says He Was Called To Save The Church

By Ephraim Nyirenda

In quest of responding to the request made by the Episcopal Conference of Malawi that the Diocesan Vicar General of the Diocese of Karonga go back to Kachebere major seminary Monsignor Denis Chitete says he will go for the good of the Church.

Monsignor Chitete was speaking at St Mary’s Parish in Karonga during a mass cerebrations where he represented the Bishop of Karonga Diocese to confirm new Catholics.

Fr Chitete said the seminary was closed because of lacking lecturers hence the need to go back to the seminary. “It is painful when one was with his Diocese for the first time after working with the same seminary for about 10 years. But I can’t do otherwise because this is what I was called for.” Fr Chitete said.

Highlighting of what he will do at the seminary, Monsignor Chitete heartedly said that, with the experience he has gotten through the administration of the Diocese he will help the Catholic Church in Malawi through Cachebere Major Seminary to achieve Gods mandate to train future priests.

“When I was in the seminary I was teaching philosophy and am going back to teach the same subject.” He added.

He then asked Christians and pe

Fr Denis Chitete

ople of good will to pray for him as he is taking up this work.

According to him, since he was ordained a priest
Monsignor Denis Chitete says he was called to save the church.


The Development Desk of Karonga Diocese Engages Chakwela Village in Participatory Needs Assessment

By Elijah Banda

In one way of fulfilling its mandate of responding to social economic needs of the people under the jurisdiction of Karonga Diocese, the development Desk on 9th august 2017 engaged the people of Chakwela village under traditional authority Kilupula in participatory needs assessment.

In his opening remarks the head of the Development Desk Mr. Deodatus Muriya expressed the need of engaging communities in identifying the most pressing problems and suggest solutions to inform decisions in projects design that would respond to the needs of the communities.

The gathering was attended by the village head and the village members who were segregated into groups of males, females and youths to prioritize problems and suggested solutions taking into consideration of available resources within the community.

The meeting from focus group discussions established food insecurity, stable income, access to portable water, natural forestry base destruction as major problems on the radar. It was pleasing that the community was able to identify some assets within that could help solve some of the problems on the radar such assists included: land, water bodies such as; the  lakes and river, trees, skilled artisan in different fields, access to roads and good health.

In his remarks, the Project Officer for the Development Desk Mr Elijah Banda implored the communities to utilize the available resources for intended use and sustainably in order to solve the problems of food security, low household income  and limited access to portable water among others through engaging in irrigation farming, fish farming utilizing the water resource from the lake and embarking on forest management.

In his closing remarks, the representative of the village headman  for the area thanked Karonga Diocese for the initiative which he described as timely to bail out the village from the highlighted problems” our eyes are opened up now that we have many resources within us that we can use for our social economic support, we will utilize this opportunity and we ask the Diocese to continue offering technical support on this”, said the chief amid ululation from the village members.

Chakwela is one of the villages in North Karonga which have recently had cases of violent conflicts. These have retarded development activities in the village.

Four Rosarian Sisters Re-Commit to Serve the Lord

By Moses Kamanga

It was all joy and nothing short of ululations on Tuesday, 15 August, 2017 for the four brave Rosarians Sisters who vowed to give themselves selflessly to serving God as religious Sisters. The event drew Christians and relatives from different walks of life to witness the celebration. The pinnacle of the celebration was the High Mass at St. Peters Cathedral in the city of Mzuzu presided over by His Lordship John Alphonsius Ryan, Bishop of Mzuzu and concelebrated with Bishop Martnin Anwell Mtumbuka of the Diocese of Karonga.

Before the four Sister reaffirm

Sr Ruth Deliwe Ghambi making her final vows

ed their commitment to serve the Lord as Rosarian Sisters, Bishop Ryan took the Christians and Relatives in the jam packed Cathedral through the meaning of the vows and elaborated each of the three vows (Obedience, Chastity and Poverty) in a manner a shepherd does to his flock.

Adorned in her congregation regalia (White Habit, White Veil and blue band around the waist) Sister Ruth Ghambi took to the altar, her life commitment vows to serve as a Rosarian Sister which were received and signed by the Sister Mary Kaunda the Mother General of the congregation and blessed by the Local Ordinary, Bishop Ryan. It was then the turn of Sisters Elizabeth Sezi and Cecilia Chiumia giving their renewed commitment to serve the Lord after already being in the vineyard for 25 years, Finally Sister Leonia Moyo took to the alter her rejuvenated commitment to serve as Rosarian Sister after already to doing so for the past 50 years. Sister Leonia’s work in the vineyard has seen teaching Martin Mtumbuka in the Seminary some years back who is the Bishop of the Diocese of Karonga Today.

Sr Leonia comes from St. Therese Parish (Katete) in Mzimba District, Sr Cecelia Chiumia comes from St. Johns Parish (Mzambazi) in Mzimba District, Sr Elizabeth Sezi comes from Holy Cross Parish (Nkhamenya) in Kasungu District and Sr. Ruth Ghambi comes from St. Mathias Mulumba Parish (Mughese) in Chitipa District.

CCJP Karonga Engages Traditional Leaders in Fighting GBV; SGVH Mfinda of Wenya Discourages Men Drinking Behaviour.

By Vincent Bwinga

The Justice and Peace Desk (CCJP) of Karonga Diocese has started engaging traditional leaders in the fight against gender based violence. Senior GVH Mfinda from Wenya is one of the traditional leaders who are working with the Justice and Peace Desk in this noble cause.

On 15 August 2017, during on open community human right debate in his village which was organised to raise awareness of community members and to enhance their knowledge on women and girls’ rights, SGVH Mfinda pointed out that drinking behavior among  men encourages women abuse in many families in Wenya.

The SGVH took his time to rebuke this  behavior and ask all men to be responsible in their families so that they can improve their living standards.

Through this event, CCJP learnt that men  are afraid to lose power to their female counterparts thus they violence to intimidate and control women.  During the activity women were encouraged to take up challenging opportunities and embark in several income generating activities to self-sustain their living.

Community members at the event hailed CCJP for the efforts to promote women and girls rights and they said that since January 2017 there has not been any child marriage that has occurred in the area.

This activity was organized by Justice and Peace Desk of Karonga Diocese on Community Managed Women and Girls’ Rights Advocacy project which is being implemented in Chitipa district in Traditional Authorities Mwenewenya and Nthalire with Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD).The project goal is that wellbeing of vulnerable women in rural Malawi is promoted.

A similar activity is scheduled to take place in SVGH Mpalashawa on 16 August and in Chisenga on 17 August 2017.

Wamama Wachitemwano (Women of Charity) Conclude their Annual Retreat at Kaseye

By Benjamin Msowoya

On 6th August 2017, 331 Wamama Wachitemwano, a Devotional Group in the Diocese of Karonga, concluded their annual retreat at St Francis of Assisi Shrine in Kaseye, Chitipa.   The retreat was organized by the Lay Apostolate Desk and targeted all Wamama Wachitemwano in the Diocese of Karonga.   The retreat started on  2  August 2017 and closed on 6 August with a Eucharistic celebration which was presided over by the Vicar General, Mons. Denis Chitete.

Since 2016, the Lay Apostolate Desk has been organizing  annual retreat sessions for all the lay movements and devotional groups in the Diocese.  This is aimed at giving some sacred space and time to members of  lay movements to seriously reflect on their lives.  Each lay movement or devotional group is allocated days on which they can have a retreat at St Francis of Assisi Shrine in Kaseye, Chitipa.

For this year, 2017, the first group to go for the retreats were Wamama Wachitemwano.  During their retreat, the women reflected on their lives guided by the following thematic areas.

  1. My Father’s House (Kutumbika Nyumba ya Wadada)
  2. Faith (Chipulikano)
  3. Responsible Parenthood (Upapi Wahamala Mchikaya)

The women also had time for communal prayers, including Mass, as well as time to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation.