Sr. Rebecca Joseph Ndiuni, Pallottine Missionary Sister, is our first fellow sister from the Maasai tribe, a society known for its commitment to preserving their culture and traditions. According to their customs, women must marry, bear as many children as possible, care for their family and the cattle. From birth, the family of a future husband is paying the dowry of a girlchild and men may have many wives. Hence, Rebecca was not exempted from this tradition, as her people from generation to generation are typical Massai. She comes from a large family; her father has 4 wives and 23 children, among them, Rebecca.
Archbishop Alik Banda of the Archdiocese of Lusaka in Zambia, together with three guests, all priests, namely Fr. Solomon Tembo, Fr. Kabungo and Fr. Bboloko paid a casual visit to the Pallottine Fathers´ community, at Green House, Westwood, on 28 May 2021. Together with the community of the Pallottine Missionary Sisters they had a family gathering of fraternal sharing and thereafter lunch in the Fathers´ community.
On February 26, there was an online meeting of the General Council with the Provincial Council of the Province of Our Lady, Queen of Peace in Tanzania. Sr. Basilisa Jacob, Provincial Superior, presented a report which displayed the current situation of the Province. Sisters in Tanzania are a dynamically developing community, both in terms of new vocations and undertaken apostolic works. Medical care, education, pastoral service - these are the most important directions of the Sisters' evangelical work.
Formation Program for the newly Professed Sisters
The five newly professed Sisters of the International Novitiate/Tanzania (8 December 2020) had the privilege of an extra three-month program after their Profession on December 7th, 2020. It was organised in Poli Singisi/ Arusha/ Tanzania by the General Council and guided by Sr. Liberata Niyongira and Sr. Honorata Lyimo, our General Councilors. This was to cover some topics which were not taught during the Preparation Course due to Covid -19 pandemic, which limited the movements of their Novice Mistress who was forced to stay in Rwanda for several weeks as the borders were closed. The Sisters needs were met through the planned program which included different courses about community life and intercultural living, commitment and the evangelical counsels, discovery of true freedom and discernment, history of the Congregation, New Testament and images of God, Church and Missiology, self-knowledge and emotional management. Deeping the Our Way of Life (Constitution) brought a sense of belonging and living the charism as consecrated women.
The Pallottine Missionary Sisters opened a mission in Magogo Village, Dakawa Parish, Mororgoro, Tanzania, in 2017, at the urgent request of the Parish priest. It is in the Bush about nine km from the main Morogoro Road. The people of this area are mainly Maasai Nomadic Pastoralists, who live in the forest of Mvomero. To help the Maasai children to get an education, the Sisters opened Elisabetta Sanna, a Day and Boarding School. They began in 2018 with 21 pupils, and this year 163 have enrolled, with 53 of them living at the school and nearly 40 walking to school.
The liturgical feast of Epiphany in the Church of Tanzania was celebrated on Sunday, January 3rd. However, as a Pallottine family, we kept our tradition of celebrating on the 6th of January. Our two communities: the International Novitiate and the Leadership Community joined together for the celebration. We also invited the Pallottine Fathers and Brothers who work in Arusha and outside, and were able to join us. As a custom on this day, we also invited our workers and the neighboring religious communities. The Sisters of St. Elizabeth Congregation also joined us on this joyful day.
From my childhood I often heard about the name St. Joseph since my father chose the name Joseph as he received his baptism as an adult. He said he loved the name because he also loved the Blessed Virgin Mary just from the catechism. Being from the pastoralists, he was not so keen. Perhaps he did like the name Joseph and Mary and nothing more. However, this name for me remained in my heart as a child. But after entering into lots of challenges in my journey to religious life, I did not know who to tell my desire.
Sr. Honorata Lyimo, a General Councilor, joined Sr. Basilisa Jacob, the Provincial Superior of the English/Tanzania Province and her Vicar, Sr. Martha Ayaqhoda, for a Visitation to the Mission in Zambia from 19 November – 02 December 2020.
“Send laborers into your vineyard and spare your people”.
The 7th of December was a very special day for the Missionary Sisters of the Catholic Apostolate in East Africa, as they witnessed the first commitment of five Novices from their International Novitiate in Arusha, Tanzania. One Novice is Rwandese and four are Tanzanians. Sr Honorata Lyimo, a General Councilor, was delegated by the Superior General, Sr. Izabela Świerad, to receive their vows in the presence of Sr. Basilisa Jacob, the Provincial Superior of the English/Tanzanian Province and Sr. Liberata Niyongira, a General Councilor, representing Sr. Angeline Kambugu, the Regional Superior of Rwanda/Congo Region.
- From 25.11 to 4.12 the second year Novice Sisters from the International Novitiate had their spiritual retreat in preparation for the ceremony of their First Profession. The sisters were accompanied by Father Emmanuel Msuli SAC and Sr. Małgorzata Lech SAC.
On Sunday morning, December 8th at 9.00 a.m. in the Tanzanian parish of St. Noe, Poli Singisi / Arusha, a solemn Mass in honor of the Immaculate Conception began, during which ten Novice Sisters made their First Profession. The newly professed Sisters are from the first group of Novices who have completed a full two-year program of their formation in the International Novitiate, which was inaugurated on September 8th 2017. The Sisters come from Tanzania, Rwanda and DR Congo. The ceremony today was an historic event for the Congregation of the Pallottine Missionary Sisters.
On November 21, our mission was officially opened among the Maasai tribe in Magogo, near the small town of Dakawa in Morogoro Region in Eastern Tanzania. The Sisters began their work there in 2017. The mission is located in the Bush, 8 km from the main road, and includes a Convent for the Sisters with a chapel and the Blessed Sacrament, Elisabetta Sanna Primary School (currently 56 children attend, mainly Maasai), a small hostel, administration buildings and an unfinished Health Center building.
I greet you cordially and would like to share with you a few words. Tanzania has conquered me, not only the beauty of landscapes but also the beauty of the people. Sisters, Novices and local people have stolen my heart. Novices are “absorbing” Pallotti very much, they are very open and interested in lectures about St. Vincent and our charism. And I am happy with their youthful enthusiasm and openness to the Lord's work in them. I also had a day of recollection for them. Together with this international group we also cooked a Polish dinner. The menu consisted of bigos, pork chops and apple pie for dessert. Something fabulous…
The mission in Zambia of the Pallottine Missionary Sisters is now two years old. To mark the occasion Sr. Izabela Swierad, the Superior General, together with Sr. Basilisa Jacob, the Provincial Superior of the English -Tanzanian Province and Sr. Mary McNulty, a member of the Mission Commission went on visitation in May 2019. It was a very busy week with many activities. Here are some of the highlights of the visit.
June 6th 2019 was a joyful day for the Pallottine Missionary Sisters in Tanzania as Sr. Mary McNulty, our first missionary in Tanzania and former Provincial Superior, celebrated her Golden Jubilee of Religious Profession. The thanksgiving Mass was celebrated in Christ the King Parish Church, Siuyu, and was presided over by Rev. Edward Mapunda, Bishop of Singida together with many concelebrants.
This year’s celebration of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary will be written in golden letters in the pages of the history of our Congregation. In Tanzania we experienced two big events; the beginning of the second year of the International Novitiate with the reception of new novices into the Novitiate and the Profession of the first group of the novices who completed their novitiate formation.
During the morning prayers, echoes of joy were heard in the International Novitiate when the Provincial Superior Sr. Basilisa Jacob accepted 12 Postulants into the Novitiate. These postulants come from four countries namely Cameroon, Rwanda, Congo and Tanzania. Among those who witnessed this joy-filled event were: Sr. Belancilla Mukandahiro, the Regional Superior of Our Lady of Kibeho Rwanda, the Delegature Superior of the Pallottine Fathers in East Africa Fr. John Onna, and many other Sisters from different communities in Tanzania who had come for the First Profession.
On 3rd December, 2018, we were honored by the visit of His Grace, Marek Solczynski, the Apostolic Nuncio of Tanzania. He was accompanied by His Grace Isaac Amani, the Archbishop of Arusha Archdiocese, Prosper Lyimo, the Auxiliary Bishop, Fr. Simon Tengesi, the Vicar General, Fr. Juvenalis Wengaa, the Secretary General and five Priests, leaders of the Deaneries.
Prisca Kyemi, although in a Maasai dress she is not a Maasai. She is a young talented woman, of the Nyaturu tribe from Singida, Tanzania in East Africa, who was dreaming to see Rome and St. Peter's Basilica.
In the first the days of October, the month dedicated to Our Lady of the Holy Rosary, the new group of Postulants from Rwanda, Congo, Cameroon and Singida/Tanzania came to the House of the International Novitiate in Arusha/Tanzania.
Karibu (welcome in Swahiili) to our General Superior, who at the end of July surprised the members of the International Novitiate in Tanzania with a visit. What a joy to meet Mother again! The group of Sisters welcomed Sr. Izabela at Kilimanjaro Airport and the Novices, with songs and roses, dancing cheerfully came out to meet her at the gate of the Novitiate House. The Novice Mistress, Sr. Marie Claire Mukeshimana, lead all to the chapel and offered a prayer of praise to the Lord, for a good trip of Sister, thanking for her commitment to our Congregation, asking blessing for these days of our being together.
The New Year (1st January) has been a great blessing to Queen of Peace Province in Tanzania, as Sr. Johnerica Sirilo pronounced her Final Profession and the four second year Novices: Sr. Emanuela Peter Sulle, Sr. Gema Fransis Tarimo, Sr. Pudensiana Melanio Augustino and Sr. Martha Benjamin Felix pronounced their first vows.
We all wish you joyful and prosperous Xmas from Novitiate Community in Arusha. God bless you abundantly.
We give thanks to the Lord, on the day of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary (8th of December), as fifteen Postulants make their entrance to the International Novitiate in Tanzania. What a great joy for the entire Congregation to witness another historical and significant event in the year 2017.
Inauguration of the International Novitiate
8thSeptember 2017, Poli Singisi, Tanzania
Words of the General Superior to all the Participants of the celebration:
Today, on September8ththe Church celebrates the feast of the Birth of our Blessed Mother. This day is also very significant and historical for us Pallottine Missionary Sisters, who will give birth to a new International Novitiate here in Poli Singisi, Tanzania. This initiative of creating an International Novitiatefor our entire congregation had a few reasons: to spread our charism and carry on the mission work entrusted to us by God; to bring closer unity and collaboration among all the members of our Congregation, and to form mature and courages missionaries and disciples of different nationalities and cultures, who through diversity, but in unity, will carry on the Joy of the Gospel through the Pallottine Charism, and through their testimony of faith, love and hope, as well as lives and works - to the nations.
It is with great honor and with traditional songs and dances, the Sisters welcomed the Superior General Sr. Izabela Świerad for an historic event – to inaugurate the International Novitiate in Poli Singisi, Arusha and to hold a Continental Meeting of Major Superiors of Africa, India and Brazil. Sr. Izabela was accompanied by the Superior General of the Roman Pallottine Sisters, Sr. Ivete Garlet and her Councillor, Sr. Stella Marotta. They arrived on 31 August at Kilimanjaro International airport. This invitation to visit our mission in Tanzania has come as a result of the historical celebration which was held on the feast of Pentecost at Pia Casa in Rome, the birth place of the Pallottine Sisters, and from their hearts’ desire to work towards unification of two Sisterly Congregation.