Following Desecration of Convent Chapel in Malawi, Bishop Announces Novena Prayer

Credit: Public Domain

Following the desecration of chapel at the convent of Poverelle Sisters (PS) in Malawi’s Mangochi Diocese just over a week ago, the Local Ordinary of the Diocese has announced a novena to “pray for those involved to be found and for justice to flow like a river.”

The Sisters’ chapel located in the Southern region of the Southeastern African country was desecrated on Sunday, August 30.

Bishop Montfort Stima confirmed the incident in a Sunday, September 6 statement saying, “I have written this letter with a broken heart and with the hope that the Lord will not leave us alone; He is always with us.” 

In the one-page statement obtained by ACI Africa, Bishop Stima explained that those involved in the desecration gained access to the convent in Kankao Parish by vandalizing the gate after overpowering the security guards.

The desecrators, whose identity and number are not provided, “opened the tabernacle where they took the Blessed Sacrament that was in the Monstrance and consecrated hosts in the ciborium,” Bishop Stima says in the September 6 statement.

“We do not know what they are doing with our Lord Jesus or where they left Him. This is a very frustrating and frightening thing, especially in view of our faith in the Eucharist,” the 62-year-old Prelate adds.

Those who desecrated the convent Sisters’ chapel also made away with “money, laptops, wallets and phones,” the Bishop revealed.

Following the desecration, Bishop Stima has invited the people of God in Malawi’s Mangochi Diocese to participate in a novena starting next week, September 14.

The Bishop also directed members of the Clergy, Religious men and women to pray the Novena in their respective communities starting Monday, September 7.

The purpose of the novena, the Malawian Prelate says, “is to apologize to the Lord Jesus Christ for the theft and to pray for those involved to be found and for justice to flow like a river.”

“Never tire of praying until these desecrators are found,” Bishop Stima says and urges the faithful to also pray for the affected Poverelle Sisters.

The Mangochi-based Pavorelle Sisters have been serving in Malawi since 1983.


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ACI Africa was officially inaugurated on August 17, 2019 as a continental Catholic news agency at the service of the Church in Africa. Headquartered in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, this media apostolate will strive to facilitate the telling of Africa’s story by providing media coverage of Catholic events on the African continent, giving visibility to the activities of the Church across Africa where statistics show significant growth in numbers and the continent gradually becoming the axis of Catholicism. This is expected to contribute to an awareness of and appreciation for the significant role of the Church in Africa and over time, the realization of a realistic image of Africa that often receives negative media framing.

Father Don Bosco Onyalla
Editor-in-Chief, ACI Africa
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