By Innocent Maziya
The 10th World Meeting of Families took place in Rome from the 19th to the 26th June under the theme: “Family love: a vocation and a path to holiness.” The highlight of this meeting was the Celebration of Mass on Sunday, 26th June 2022, presided over by His Holiness Pope Francis. One of the main objectives of the meeting and the celebration was to once again bring focus to the Family. As the domestic Church, the family is the cornerstone of our Catholic Community and thus needs to be strengthened through prayer and active formation.
Our Diocese joined the celebration in two ways. First there was an online Novena prayer that was held leading to the World Meeting of Families which was hosted by the Southern Africa Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) and was led by various Dioceses, our Diocese included. Second was the Celebration of Mass at Diocese and Parish levels dedicated to Families.
The Diocesan Marriage and Family Life Chaplain, Fr. Nkomo, led a Diocesan Mass Celebration at the Cathedral on the 26th June to pray for Families and to remind us to work towards the holiness of families. In his homily, Fr. Nkomo emphasized the need to strengthen families in their spiritual journey and the role of Parishes in supporting families. He noted that our communities are made up of all types of families, including extended families, single parent families and child headed families, all of whom need the support of the Church to grow in faith. A strong family makes a strong Church
The Celebrant invoked a special benediction for all families.
As part of the celebration, the Diocese has distributed a special prayer for families in a prayer card, written in both Siswati and English. Catholics are urged to recite this prayer as often as possible to help strengthen families. There were also candles that were blessed and distributed to every Parish in the Diocese. These candles are a symbol that reminds of the importance of families, especially in their role of sharing love in our communities.
In demonstrating the love shared in families, each family in the Diocese was given a mandate to find a family in need and help that family in one way or another.