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Picture of Joint teams of the two dioceses after the learning visit have a group photo at Ntcheu Parish
Karonga and Dedza Diocese Share Notes on Family Planning Methods

By Benjamin Msowoya and Maureen Soko

On 23rd and 24th March 2018, a team of officials from the Diocese of Karonga visited the Diocese of Dedza.  The purpose of the trip was to learn from Dedza Diocese on how they are implementing their interventions in Family Planning Methods among the faithful.

Picture of Joint teams of the two dioceses after the learning visit have a group photo at Ntcheu Parish
Joint teams of the two dioceses after the learning visit have a group photo at Ntcheu Parish

From Karonga Diocese, the team comprised of Fr. Joachim Mwale (the Diocesan Family postulate Chaplain), Fr Joseph Sikwese (the Pastoral Secretary), Mr Vincent Shaba (the Head of Health Desk in the Diocese), Mr Benjamin Msowoya (the Sunday School Project Coordinator), Mr and Mrs Sikanda (Chair-couple for the Family Apostolate), Mr and Mrs Nyondo (Member-couple for the Family Apostolate) and Ms Maureen Soko (of Tuntufye FM Radio).

Picture of Part of team that went on the trip have a group photo after first briefing
Part of team that went on the trip have a group photo after first briefing

While in Dedza Diocese, the team from Karonga Diocese was briefed on how Dedza Diocese is implementing a project on Family Planning Methods among the people it serves.  The Diocese of Dedza has trained 15 couples in some of its parishes as sensitization agents and service providers on Natural Family Planning Methods. These selected couples first live what they have been taught and then lead others on the same. So far, Dedza Diocese, through such trained couples, has reached to over 9700 people on Family Planning. Of all these, 127 couples (both Catholics and non-Catholics, including Muslims) have chosen to follow Natural Family Planning Methods as recommended by the Church.

The Diocese of Karonga established the Family Apostolate in 2015 in order to serve families in a special way.  Under a program on Responsible Parenthood, as funded by the Sunday School Project, the Diocese is implementing several Reproductive Health interventions including popularization of Family Planning Methods among the people it serves.  This is done with technical help from the Health Department of the Diocese of Karonga.

Picture of Husband of one beneficiary couple of the project testifying on benefits of natural family planning
Husband of one beneficiary couple of the project testifying on benefits of natural family planning

Therefore, the trip to Dedza Diocese was a learning visit on how best to popularize and train the laity on Family Planning according to Catholic Ethos; especially on Natural Family Planning Methods.  Mr Vincent Shaba (head for the Health Department) said the visit was an eye opener since the Diocese of Karonga has been sensitizing people on Family Planning but lacked some knowledge on best strategies for successful training of the laity. He said that he was glad that the visit to Dedza Diocese, Ntcheu Parish in particular, had provided the team from Karonga Diocese with some of the needed knowledge on this.

He was also quick to add that they were encouraged to see that not all that the Diocese of Karonga was doing in this regard was off point; the strategy to reach out to families with Family Planning issues through the Family Apostolate was hailed by teams from both Dioceses as a good idea in as far as sustainable efforts in this area are concerned.

Having benefited from the trip, the Diocese of Karonga plans to train its own sensitization agents and service providers on Natural Family Planning Methods (NFP) so that the high demand in the Diocese, from people who would like to follow the NFP methods is satisfied with help from the Church.

Picture of Bishop Mtumbuka (in front) and Archbishop Ziyaye (behind) file past the body of Bishop Kanyama
Bishop Mtumbuka Describes the Death of Bishop Kanyama as a Great Loss

By Ephraim Nyirenda

Catholics and people of goodwill from all walks of life gathered at Likuni Parish on Tuesday to pray for the repose of the soul of Bishop Emmanuel Kanyama of Dedza Diocese who passed on Friday, 16 February at his home; Kapiri in Mchinji District.

Picture of Bishop Mtumbuka (in front) and Archbishop Ziyaye (behind) file past the body of Bishop Kanyama
Bishop Mtumbuka (in front) and Archbishop Ziyaye (behind) file past the body of Bishop Kanyama

Speaking during the highly concelebrated requiem Mass, the main celebrant Right Reverent Martin Anwel Mtumbuka, Bishop of Karonga Diocese and Vice Chairperson of the Episcopal Conference of Malawi, described the death of Bishop Kanyama as a great loss to the conference of bishops and the entire Malawi nation.

In his homily, Bishop Mtumbuka said the Late Bishop Kanyama was a gifted man, whose numerous gifts were put at the service of the Church and the nation in various areas.

“I remember Bishop Kanyama as a quiet man, but when he wanted to contribute, he could not mince words. He was always straight to the point which some of us cannot do,” said Bishop Mtumbuka.

He further urged the congregation to commend themselves into the hands of God during this Lenten season. He condemned the tendency of being preoccupied with daily cares and material things without sparing time to spend with God.

The Vice Chairperson of ECM emphasized the need for Christians to maintain a good relationship with Christ through the Sacrament of Penance and Eucharist during this time of Lent.

Notable figures at the Mass were Vice President of the Republic of Malawi Dr Saulos Claus Chilima, Minister of Information Nicholas Dausi, Leader of Opposition Dr Lazarus Chakwera and Former Vice President Khumbo Kachali among others.

Bishop Emmanuel Kanyama was born in 1962, ordained priest in 1990 and consecrated Bishop of Dedza on 6th October, 2007.

After the Mass, the body of the Late Bishop Kanyama was taken to Bembeke Cathedral in Dedza where it will be laid to rest on 21st February after requiem mass to be presided over by Archbishop Ziyaye of the Metropolitan See of Lilongwe to which Dedza is a suffragan diocese.

Pictures

Picture of Bishop Martin Mtumbuka delivering his homily
Bishop Martin Mtumbuka delivering his homily
Vice PresidentDr  Saulos Chilima and Madam Chilima

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture of Catholic Women Organisation members carrying flowers and wreaths
Catholic Women Organisation members carrying flowers and wreaths
(Second from right) Leader of Opposition, Dr Lazarus Chakwera
Casket carrying the body of Late Bishop Emmanuel Kanyama