On their way to the Diocese of Manzini

Ready, set, go!

NichellinoYesterday, Sunday 22nd June 2014, all the leaving/outgoing groups ready to live missionary experiences met to greet each other and receive the Turin Archbishop’s blessing in the headquarters of the Consolata Missionaries of Turin.

Songs, videos, prayers have been the core of the day to support everyone and give some easy tips to live with clarity and openmindedness a very nice time of reflection and to wish everyone to share the fire of love and joy in every corner of the world.

The Nichelino’s (small town near Turin) Group consists of 10 young people looking forward to meet their brothers in Swaziland, where they’ll be welcomed by José Luis, the Bishop and by all the people to spend with them a unique and unforgettable experience.

Diocesan priests update the diocesan webpage

photo(1)It was a great learning experience. We had met last week to start getting involved in media.

We then decided to “learn by doing”. We would all prepare something to be published: a text and a photo during the week and come together again to publish them.

We met in the evening for a couple of hours. The one who finished first helped another one.

The result: 7 new articles published by the priests (plus this one, of course!)

Funeral of Mrs Magongo at Florence Mission


mrs magongo was laid to rest at florence cemetryst anns member and leader of marys children it was attende by over three thousand people.  may her soul rest in peace.


two priests attende the funeral fr Mabuza and fr,Bhila.



The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their troubles.

God did not promise that life would be easy but he promised to be with us on every step of the way. So keep going

There is something beautiful about scars, whatever nature. A scar means the hurt is over, the wound is closed and healed, done with. So its better to stay.

BY: Only

The History of Makhungutja and KaNdinda

website 1

Lapha lapha! Kuleta tintsaba,

Kukhona bantfwana, kukhona bothishela.

Ngwa ngwa. Shaya thishela, shaya thishela.

Kwasho lichegu lendlula ngendlela,

Latsi tsintsita thishela, latsi tsintsita thishela.

Amid dances and clapping of hands, one encounters this humorous song as you approach a little, tidy and glamorous school, carved in the thick forests of the Makhungutja Hills. It is sung by none other than Makhungutja Catholic School students, a school that boasts of having produced renowned leaders within the society of the Swazi people. Situated in an atmosphere of a serene, tranquil and suitable place for a tutor to share ideas to a learner, Sancta Filipo Benizzi School (Original name of the school), welcomes one with a beam smile.

It all commenced as early as 1956, when the Servite Friars dirtied themselves with Gods work in this area. With the base in Manzini, they started to evangelise the people there. They pitched their tents at Ematjeni, a place within what is called Elukhele in our times. There they found a Dikiza family, which embraced the faith, and a catechetical discourse started. It was during these periods that a young fellow, Daniel Vilakati (longest serving head teacher of the school) would encounter the Catholic faith, and later embarked on a journey to Manzini, for studies and further catechesis. In 1958, the then Fr Siro Edoni OSM, the Cathedral Administrator, built two thatched houses.  During the midweek, these houses were for lectures, whilst on weekends it catered for catechesis and prayers. Since the Dikiza’s were farm dwellers, it was deemed necessary that the school be transferred to its present place, situated on Swazi Nation land because the farm owner was not so fond of education.

On the other side, the first Bishop of Manzini, Bishop Barneschi (Lungcwazi) had welcomed the Salesian Friars to his Diocese in 1952. Due to their zeal of nurturing school kids, the young Salesian Friars, in particularly Fr Patrick Fleming and Br Charles, took it upon themselves to also develop schools outside of the Salesian compound. As early as the 1960’s their focus was particularly on four schools, namely St Boniface later known as Sigcineni, Elwandle, St Francis which later assumed the name Egebeni, St Phillips now known as Makhungutja and St Elizabeth a name which has stood the test of times at Ntondozi area. Makhungutja seemed to be their favourite because although in the most inaccessible place, out of the four it was renowned for its excellence in producing students who were competent even when faced with children from urban schools, Salesian and St Theresa’s schools in particular. Adorned in its royal blue tunic, royal blue shirt, white t-shirt, royal blue cardigan, royal blue tracksuit, black shoes and white socks for girls, the school had a relatively high pass rates. On the other hand, the boys complemented them with their lovely colourful uniform, by their smiles, as they wore their royal blue shirts, grey trousers, white t-shirts, royal blue jersey, black shoes and grey socks.  As the enrolment of students increased, the local evangelisation itself was not to be outdone.

A number of converts were baptised, with dominating surnames such as Dikiza, Vilakati, Mndzebele and Mabuza in the forefront. Due to the vigorous pastoral zeal of one Fr Sean Murphy SDB in the late 1970’s, the neighbouring constituents down the hill fell in love with Roman Catholicism. These constituents include Emphini, Ngoyiya and KaNdinda. Now the number of Catholics grew, whilst the opposite was disappointing for the people residing next to the school. They simply lapsed, and Makhungutja Catholic School became inaccessible especially for the elderly down the hill. It was time for plan B. The congregants, in consultation with the priest, started to worship at kalaMbingo (Dlamini family at Emphini), which also proved to be cumbersome. They then decided to worship at KaNdinda under a shed known as Egushede. There was lot of discomfort there; hence, they resorted to congregate at Joachim Manyatsi’s home, who was a Catechist for St Elizabeth but residing at KaNdinda. Therefore, the congregants started to worship the Lord at KaNdinda in the year, 1989.

The community seemed big at its inception in such a way that when there was Mass, they would congregate under the tree. Not surprising at all, like many other outstations, they would fit into a rondavel hut when there was a priest-less service. Despite this glaring fact of dwindling number of the faithful in the priests’ absentia, a need of a church was there because the Catechist and his wife were old, and obviously, the church may find itself in family disputes in case they died earlier. A series of meetings ensued, and the people sold goats and chickens in order to meet the missionary halfway. The most turbulent time for this outstation was when the pioneers of this project died, and to add salt to the wound the missionary priest was transferred to Lesotho in 1991. It became a tall order for the congregants now, as the Cathedral was now under the Diocesan priests leadership, and the vision was not the same as their predecessors. Amid such torrid times for the Catholics in this area, a glimmer of hope was realised in 1995 when a parish was constituted at the Malkerns Valley and given the name St John Bosco. The shift of focus now was no longer in Manzini but Malkerns as St John Bosco was given outstations namely, ENtondozi, kaNdinda, Egebeni and eSigcineni. The talks of the need of a church continued, and this was realised finally in 2006 when the construction began under the watchful eye of Fr Michael Whelton SDB, and was completed in the same year. In August 2007, the first baptism was held in that church, which the following year in 2008, His Lordship Bishop Ncamiso Louis Ndlovu consecrated the chapel as St Dominic Savio. So far, this chapel is a beacon of hope and a marvel to admire for the people of kaNdinda as a whole, especially for its beauty and welcoming posture.

SCCW Annual Conference 2014

dudich_visitation                     SCCW Annual Conference –  Caritas  Manzini Swaziland

31 May 2014

Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin

Theology of the Visitation (Lk 1:39-56)

  • Maria demonstrates a spirituality of care to her cousin Elizabeth – stayed presence (6 months)
  • Shares her joy and rejoices with her cousin as well – a spirit of sharing
  • She reaches out to her cousin, her knowledge  –  leads to action- faith leads to action

Some Reflection questions

  1. Since Mary is our Patroness, and has a spirituality of care,- how can we define our spirituality as a Sodality/Council of Women in the Diocese?
  2. What measures/steps can we take/implement to render our response relevant to the needs of those whom we care for and to the signs of our time?

History of St. Peregrine’s Mission


1927 – 2013

The geographic view of the Mission

The St. Peregrine’s Mission is situated North of Swaziland under the Hhohho Region with Bulandzeni as its main station and, Herefords, Ndzingeni, Nyakatfo and Nkambeni as  its sub-stations.

The arrival of the first missionaries at Bulandzeni

The St. Peregrine’s Mission was founded by the Servants of Mary, Servite’s Order, in 1927.  The first Servite Friars settled at Bulandzeni on the 13th of November 1927 with the scope of beginning a new Catholic Church Mission there.  The first Friars to settle there were Fr. Agostino Fagiolo (Italian) and Bro. Giulio Potveer (from Belgium) who arrived in that place with great hope in their hearts to start a mission dedicated to St. Peregrine of Laziosi.


The idea to go to the North of the country came with the, by then, Apostolic Prefect (the first in Swaziland) Mgr. Pellegrino P. Belezze “Mawinji” (1923-1933), a Servite himself also.  On Wednesday the 9th of November 1927, the Apostolic Prefect, residing at St. Joseph’s Mission, summoned Fr. Agostino Fagiolo and Bro. Giulio Potveer, who were also residing at St. Joseph’s Mission, to have a discussion with them.  After that lengthy discussion, Mgr. P. Belezze gave the two Friars a letter of obedience to go to the North of Swaziland to begin a Catholic Mission.  The following day, Thursday the 10th of November 1927, the two Friars, Fr. A. Fagiolo and Bro. G. Potveer, received a blessing from the Apostolic Prefect and they begun their journey going towards Mliba.  Arriving at kaDvokolwako on Friday the 11th of November 1927, the two Friars had great difficulties crossing the great Umbuluzi river with their horses and cart but, with the help of local villagers they finally managed to cross the river and continue with their journey.  Glad to have overcome one great obstacle on their way towards the North, little did they know that they will encounter another one similar to the first.  Arriving at Bhalekane and following tracks towards the North, they found the river iNkomazi and measuring the greatness of the river by their minds, it was proven to them impossible to cross the river.  They were then helped by a local business man Mr. B. N. Holland, who had a store at Bhalekane, who brought ten bulls to help pull the cart across the river, the bulls only to be stuck at the middle of the river but finally they managed to pull across.  The friars rested across the river for night was falling ending the day dated Saturday, 12 November 1927.  On Sunday morning, the 13th of November 1927, they begun their journey once more.  They arrived at a place called Bulandzeni at around 09:00 A.M.  They moved around looking for the best place to settle and of course in search also for the source of life, water.  They found the best spot (where the mission is today), bought the land from Mr. Leone Franklin for twenty five shillings. For the first few days they used their tents for shelter and, with the help of the locals, after a few days, they managed to build stick and mud huts which they used for some time. In those days, they also payed homage to the local Chief, Makhosikhosi, brother to King Sobhuza on the 17th of November 1927.

Beginning of the Friars’ missionary activities

The Servite’s missionary activity started among those who came to help the Friars’ construct the huts. Spreading, Fr. Agostino Fagiolo is remembered by the locals by his everyday activity of visiting ‘kraals’ or homesteads.  It is said that when he entered a kraal, he used to start by saying “in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit”.  Thus, the Swazis used to call him “Ngegama lika Yise (loosely translated, in the name of the Father).  Fr. Fagiolo would teach catechism even in shebeen areas wrote one of the sisters.

The chronicle book of Fr. Fagiolo states that on their first Christmas there, 25 December 1927, on their 10:00 A.M. Mass, they had about 14 community members present.  Holy communion was distributed to 4 that day. A baby and an old woman were baptised also.

The Mantellite, Sisters of Pistoia’s arrival     

In 1936 the 2nd of November, some sisters, Mantellite Sisters of Pistoia, arrived at St. Peregrine’s Mission to help in missionary work.  They were Sr. Gerarda and Sr. Vittoria.  They found Fr. Agostino Fagiolo and Bro. Gioacchino (Bro. Giulio had died few years before due to Malaria and buried at St. Joseph’s Mission).  Already, when the sisters arrived, there was a school, the priest being a part time teacher there and the sisters helped in teaching other subjects in the small school thus the St. Peregrine Primary School dates back from the year the first missionaries arrived at Bulandzeni in 1927.  After sometime, the sisters reinforced with Sr. Maurizia, Sr. Roberta, and Sr. Sebastiana.


Fr. Fagiolo was transferred from St. Peregrine’s Mission on the 29th of December 1943, Fr. Giuseppe Bello being the new priest in-charge arriving with Bro. Elia Dal Magro on the same day.

Few years later, the Mantellate Sisters were substituted by the local Mahlabane Servite Sister.

Growth of the Mission

St. Peregrine extended its missionary and apostolic activities by opening a house at Tshaneni, building new classrooms at the school and building a church at Bulandzeni.  For many years the mission did not only serve the people of Bulandzeni but also Havelock Mine, Ohlangothini, Ensangwini, Pigg’s Peak (where the Mantellite sisters had a clinic), Enkambeni, Tshaneni, Mhlume, Tabankulu and Lomahasha.

Fr. T. Biondi ushering St. Peregrine’s Mission to the 21st century

After 27 years of Fr. Giuseppe Bello’s stay at St. Peregrine’s Mission, in 1970 Fr. Terenzio Biondi was posted to St. Peregrine coming from Good Sheperd Mission, Siteki, where he had spent 18 years as the priest in-charge from the year he arrived in Swaziland in January 1948.  Fr. Biondi foresaw, among other developments; the primary school which trebled its previous size with a boys and girls hostel; a milling and a pre-school ventured to provide income for the local women; and a construction of a multi-purpose hall.  At the age of 82, Fr. Biondi, elderly and sickly, left St. Peregrine’s Mission (actually Swaziland) in 2003 after 33 years at St. Peregrine’s Mission which was more or less like his home.

Fr. Aaron Zunge Ginindza took after Fr. Biondi serving both St. Joseph’s and St. Peregrine’s Mission.  His apostolate was mostly catechetical and forming small Christian communities.  However, his service at St. Peregrine was short lived.  Fr. Maurice O’Gorman continued after him from 2004 based at Regina Mundi, Pigg’s Peak himself.  The St. Peregrine’s Mission was under a day to day care of the Catechist Mr Tfwala from St. Joseph’s Mission. Fr. Maurice O’Gorman took good care of the mission’s only school, the St. Peregrine’s Primary School.  Evidence of that is the newly constructed home economics block aided by his oversees friends.  He was well known for helping needy pupils with their school fees, doing charity to the poor mostly the elderly and visiting the sick.  He was called to eternal rest in 2011.

Seeing the need of having a priest running the mission, Bishop Ncamiso Ndlovu assigned the local, Diocesan Priest, Fr. Mandlenkhosi Makama, in 2011, to be in-charge of St. Peregrine Mission.  He was, however, looking after not only St. Peregrine but also Regina Mundi Mission and based at Pigg’s Peak.  He kept the flames of faith burning especially with his ability to deliver the word of God.

Bishop Ndlovu relieved Fr. Makama of the heavy load by assigning Fr. Sandile Mswane to St. Peregrine’s Mission to be the priest in-charge from 23rd of July 2012 up to date.

Prayer for Ecumenism

ship_of_ecumenism_2Lord Jesus Christ you willed that your disciples be one just as you are one with the Father. You realised that because of the challenges of this world, we will be tempted to hate, to condemn, and to jeopardise the good works of others. We ask you Lord to help us acknowledge our faults and to forgive one another from the heart Lord, send us your Spirit of unity, love, and service so that all who bear the name Christian may look and be able to see beyond the boundaries of their traditions. Lord, help all Christians to work for unity, help us Lord to work together for the salvation of the world. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.