Story by ECM
The Diocese of Dedza on Saturday 30th October 2021, launched a group of Sts. Charles Lwanga and Benedetta in Ntcheu parish after the demands from animators of children for two years.
According to the Vicar General Of the diocese of Dedza, Monsignor John Chithonje, the group is composed of under aged Children aged between 14 to 17 years who mostly stay stranded in their spiritual guide before they join the youth group at the age of 18.
“After receiving first communion and confirmation this age group is always stranded because they are not sure what to do next since they are too big to remain at holy childhood and too small to join the youth. We saw this gap that’s why this group of St Charles Lwanga and St Benadeta has been formed in a bid to bridge the gap that has always been there, said Msgr Chithonje
“This group will help children have a chance to learn more about Catholic Doctrine and other things about their spiritual life. During their meetings children will be learning the importance of Praying and participating in missionary work, helping their fellow children, visiting the sick, paying their tithe and also learning more about their Saints Charles Lwanga and Benadeta among others,” he added
He later advised the youth to build themselves in faith by loving God, being obedient, prayerful, humble and dedicated to mission work so that the spirituality of the group will be based on the life of their patron saints Charles Lwanga and Benadeta.
Stressing on mission month, the youth were also encouraged to always speak what they have seen and heard about God for it is better to make God happy than to make a man happy just as Peter and John did (acts 4 verse 1- 20) when he was told not to speak or teach anything in the name of Jesus Christ.
“St Charles Lwanga suffered and was killed because of preaching the word of God just like Peter and John in the Bible and you should be willing to suffer because of the word of God just like St Charles Lwanga and St Benadeta,” added Msgr Chithonje
Joana Khuleya, a young girl from Ntcheu parish in Dedza diocese said the new group of St Charles Lwanga and Benadeta will help her a lot because instead of just staying at home waiting to reach 18 to join the youth she will be going to the club where she will be able to learn and share a lot about God.
Emmanuel Chibwazi, a young boy from Bembeke Parish in the same diocese said the group will also help him a lot because he was too shy to join the Youth Group which had older people.
“ I really wanted to join the Youth club but I was too shy to join considering that I am only 16 years old and the group had old people some in their late 20s and some early 30s but now am happy I will join St Charles Lwanga and St Benadeta,” said Chibwazi
After Holy Mass, the Children performed different activities such as dramas, dances and presenting bible verses among others. Children over 1000 from all the parishes in the diocese of Dedza attended the function where the Vicar General of Dedza diocese, Monsignor John Chithonje was the main celebrant.
St. Bernadetta was from Lourdes, France and despite her suffering from Chronic Tuberculosis she spent her life praying in isolation and she was full of wisdom, happiness and humility until her death in 1879 at the age of 35. She was declared Saint by Pope Pio X in 1933.
St. Charles Lwanga, was among 22 martyrs assassinated ruthlessly and burnt in the heaps of firewood under the orders of a Ugandan chief who was irritated that Charles was teaching about Jesus Christ after the chief chased away all priests from the area. He was declared Saint by Pope Paul VI in 1964.