On December 16th, 2021, with joy and thanksgiving, the Lavigerie missionary centre in Kigali, Rwanda, was inaugurated. A long project prepared since 2011, of which the vocation is to extend the work of evangelisation in Central Africa; a place of peace, reconciliation and forgiveness.
Condolences to all of us. Edwin is leaving us without waiting for us!
Here is a brief account of what has happened in the last three days.
Monday afternoon (7/6/2021) Edwin had a stomach ache. He went to buy 4 tablets to relieve the pain. In the evening, at 9 o’clock, he felt the need to go to the regional hospital in Gitega. On my way back from Bujumbura, I met him at the gate. He told me that he did not really need to be accompanied… Forty-five minutes later, I called him. He told me that he would be back soon. Finally, he comes back at 2 o’clock in the night. I was beaten down by the sun from the long journey. At four o’clock, he woke me up so that I could take him to the hospital.
We went to Bethany hospital, in Songa, as he wanted. At four thirty, he was admitted in the emergencies. Edwin was complaining of burning pain in the stomach. It was related to the pancreas, according to tests done in Kenya a few months earlier. The nursing staff were dedicated, professionally competent, as we know them. After some tests, the doctors decided to admit him to hospital. The diagnosis was similar to the one in Nairobi: acute blood infection linked to pancreatic pain. The efforts gave some results: the pain comes and goes. Yesterday at ten fifty (Tuesday evening), before leaving the hospital and after having brought another sick carer, I spoke with Dr Lamberta, “the chief doctor of Bethany Hospital”, who said: “we have really deployed everything we believed necessary to contain the situation. If tomorrow there is no visible improvement, we will refer him to Bujumbura. This morning (Wednesday), at four thity, I arrived at Bethany hospital. At eight thirty, we left for Bujumbura. We passed through our community in Gitega, where Edwin went out himself to collect his passport in his room. He met Father Bernard and greeted him. Two hundred meters from Murayi, Edwin began to say “incomprehensible” things. His eyes began to spin, his mouth to shift to the side. Supported by two people, one on each side, he was immediately taken to the medical clinic in Murayi. A doctor received us, he did everything he could, but Erwin’s body was getting colder and colder. The doctor said that this was not a good sign at all. He injected him with adrenaline which had no effect, as Edwin passed away peacefully.
After getting the death certificate, we took his body to the mortuary in Gitega, and made all the necessary arrangements. I returned to the community at five twenty in the evening.
May our brother remain in the eternal peace of the Father.
(Provincial Delegate of Burundi)
Wednesday evening, 9 June 2021.
This text was sent through the WhatsApp network of PAC, translated and edited by mafrome.org
Call for solidarity with the population of Goma
The General Council appeals to all confreres to come to the aid of the people of Goma who have been severely affected by the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano in recent days. In particular, it invites us to express our moral, spiritual and material support to the confreres of the parish of Notre Dame d’Afrique in Katoy who have remained on the spot and who are taking care of the displaced people who are flocking there. On Monday morning, what is missing is food. You can send your donations to the General Bursar’s Office here in Rome, CASA GENERALIZIA DELLA SOCIETA DEI MISSIONARI D’AFRICA PADRI BIANCHI, via Aurelia 269, 00165 Roma.
adding SOS Goma.
The confreres in Notre-Dame d’Afrique Katoy are :
- Evans Chama : firstname.lastname@example.org and WhatsApp +32 465 26 92 95
- Kanto Hembram : WhatsApp +243 991 559 236
- Robert Ouedraogo : WhatsApp +243 812 854 261
To the source of inner strength (Info-Pac)
Dennis Pam, Provincial Assistant of PAC inspired by a book of Anselm Grün
[…] As missionaries, we have all experienced those days when we wake up full of energy and ready to face the day despite the fatigue of the day before. But there are also some days when nothing goes right or when we feel weary. We have no momentum, we don’t feel like doing anything and we are paralysed. A disagreement with a confrere is enough to block us. Sometimes we feel that the water from the source that sustains us is troubled. It has lost its regenerative capacity. It is altered by attitudes that are detrimental to our very person and
possibly to our mission. So where can we find strength in such cases? And how do we find the path that leads to the source of all life? We need to move from the outer springs from which we expect healing, strength, and freshness to the inner springs that God has offered us naturally to refresh us and give us new vigour.
We have a core of energy within us, a kind of reservoir from which we can draw our sources of energy. If we access this reserve where all our strengths are gathered, we will be able to flourish and have enough energy flowing through us to fuel our actions and thoughts. Here we think of Jesus’ conversation with the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well in the Gospel of St John 4:11 where Jesus speaks of “living water”. Water is the symbol of life, and spring water from the depths of the earth is pure and gives the possibility of endless renewal. But to discover this spring of pure water within us, we must first face the troubled waters, crossing them to reach the clear spring within our souls. We have negative emotions within us that disturb the water of the spring, that influence our life and mission, that have destructive effects and turn into rigid attitudes that direct our behaviour negatively. There are, for example, fear, ambition, work that sometimes turns into a drug, perfectionism, the desire to prove to ourselves that we have this or that quality, an exaggerated demand on ourselves in order to be able to meet the expectations of others, rivalry and competition, the desire to control everything, lack of self-confidence, anger and the depression that has become the disease of the century. All these attitudes are detrimental to us. […] Throughout our journey towards God, we make adjustments and revisions to respond adequately to our call. Every inner journey is always an adventure into the unknown. Our vocation is a call, an irresistible inner force, and we respond by letting the One who calls us guide us, while lending Him our cooperation. So let us have the courage to change what needs to be changed in us. In this way, the path to the source, deep within us, becomes the path to God and to others.
Happy Easter to all of you!