Reflection for the second Sunday of the year C

by Fr Christopher Maseko

In the Old and New Testament marriage expresses the summit of the Covenant between God and Israel or between the Lord and Humanity. At Cana it is a question of a human wedding, the feast celebrating the love of a man with a woman… it is with joyful humanity, at the act of founding a human family, that Mary participates. Her presence is mentioned before the one of the Son. This week’s readings remind us that God is like a bridegroom to us, and we, all of us together, are his bride, invited to the wedding feast.

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Their journey towards priesthood

by the Bishop

The diocese of Manzini (Kingdom of Eswatini) is blessed with local vocations. At present we have seven seminarians coming from different parishes in our diocese. They spent most of the year in South Africa at the seminary of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference(SACBC). They come back for their holidays which they spend basically in our parishes. It is during their holidays in the country that we make time to meet for half a day. It gives me an opportunity to hear a bit about their personal journey towards priesthood.

Last December, though, we were able to take a couple of days together at the “St Lucia retreat and training centre” in the Vicariate of Ingwavuma (where I was bishop before being appointed to Manzini).

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Feast of the Baptism of our Lord

by Fr Christopher Maseko

Now that we have completed our Christmas Octave celebration and have also celebrated the Epiphany of the Lord, we begin to turn our eyes to Jesus’ public ministry. He begins it with his baptism by John the Baptist at the river Jordan. Sent by the Father to overcome evil with good, to proclaim the will of God, to face jealousy, persecution and death.

It was for this task that Jesus was strengthened at his baptism by the Holy Spirit. The feast, therefore reminds us of our own baptism and confirmation. Being a good and faithful Jew, Jesus does not singularize himself in any way. Since all the people had had themselves baptised, he, too, would have himself baptised. Christ sanctified the waters of baptism. The water of baptism, by the power of Christ who himself is baptised in it, calls back the dead to new life. In the story of the flood, there the dove carrying the olive branch in its beak brought solace to Noah and his family, because the flood was over. Here at the baptism of Jesus the Holy Spirit coming in the form of a dove reveals to us our merciful saviour.

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Our Lady of Hope, Wall of remembrance

by Bishop José Luis IMC

The year 2018 saw the end of the renovations of our “Little Flower” chapel which we started in November 2017. Our beautiful chapel is now 90 years’ old and looks beautiful.

In the Catholic Church, we respect the ashes of those who have been cremated in the same way we do when we bury their bodies.

Next to the chapel, though, something new has been added: a wall of remembrance. It is the first in our diocese! Around the statue of Our Lady, a place for the conservation of ashes of our deceased brothers and sisters has been built.

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