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Parish Priest Confirms Theft of Tabernacle, Blessed Sacrament from Church in Zambia

St. John the Evangelist Kamfinsa, Kitwe, in Zambia’s Diocese of Ndola.

The Parish Priest of St. John the Evangelist Kamfinsa, Kitwe of Zambia’s Ndola Diocese has, in an interview with ACI Africa, confirmed the theft of the tabernacle and the Blessed Sacrament at the Parish church.

In the Thursday, February 25 interview, Fr. Mathias Chungu said that the Sacristy was “ransacked” and that two speakers were among the items the desecrators made away with.

It was in the early morning of Monday, 22nd of February when I received a call from the parish that the Tabernacle is missing,” Fr. Chungu told ACI Africa. 

The member of the Society of African Missions (SMA) further recounted, “I immediately went to the Parish which is a 15-minute drive from the residence to assess the situation.”

“We realized that one of the windows was tampered with,” Fr. Chungu said, and added, “Apart from the window that they broke, the Tabernacle which had two ciboriums of the consecrated Blessed Sacrament and two speakers that we use for the public address system, they also ransacked the Sacristy.”

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In the Sacristy, Zambian-born Cleric recounted, the desecrators “threw the habits of the altar servers on the floor, broke where we put the liturgical books and threw some of the books on the floor.”

They also attempted to take a generator with them, but abandoned it a few meters from the church building, Fr. Chungu told ACI Africa. 

Making reference to the desecrators, the SMA Cleric said, “I pray that the spirit of God touches them and they realize that what they have done is very wrong.”

He explained, Sometimes we can talk of praying for those thieves to be cursed but what we need to do is to ask for forgiveness from the Lord. That the Lord may forgive them because they do not know what they are doing.” 

“We are in the time of Lent, where we reflect the passion of Jesus as we look forward to celebrate Easter. We are a people of hope and this should help us to intensify our prayer life because when things like this happen, they should move us closer to God,” said the Parish Priest of St. John the Evangelist Kamfinsa.

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He expressed the hope that the desecrators “come to their senses and realize that what they have done is bad.”

Fr. Chungu also described the February 22 incident as “an eye opener” adding, “We cannot just take things for granted; we need to put security measures in our churches.”

Meanwhile, the Local Ordinary of Ndola directed that the celebration of the Holy Eucharist and other liturgical activities continue at St. John the Evangelist Kamfinsa, Kitwe Parish, Fr. Chungu told ACI Africa.