Newly Ordained Priest in South Africa Encouraged to Embrace Divine Mercy Devotion

Credit: Kimberley Diocese

The Bishop of Kimberley Catholic Diocese in South Africa has encouraged a newly ordained Priest to embrace Divine Mercy devotion in his Priestly ministry. 

In his homily during the ordination of Deacon Kopano Mosala to the Priesthood, Bishop Duncan Theodore Tsoke said that the Church needs Priests who are aware of their imperfections and stand in need of God’s mercy.

“I have invited the Parishes and more especially young people to have a special devotion to the Divine Mercy and I would like to make a similar invitation to you whom the Lord will ordain to the priesthood today,” Bishop Tsoke said in his homily during the December 10 Eucharistic celebration at Holy Family Parish of Kimberley Diocese.

He said devotion to the Divine Mercy enables Priests to have “a passion for the celebration of the liturgy, the summit of our Christian faith.”

“Devotion to the Divine Mercy is about the heart of God which is the heart that is full of mercy and forgiveness of our sins,” Bishop Tsoke said. 


For the Divine Mercy to work well in a Priest’s life, the Catholic Bishop said one needs “to cultivate a strong sense in your heart that you are a sinner, you are imperfect and in need of God's mercy and compassion.”

The Local Ordinary of Kimberley Diocese said the fruits of devotion to the Divine Mercy are realized after a Priest acknowledges his unworthiness to the priesthood.

He said that the unworthiness of the Priesthood and acceptance of one’s sinful nature gives God credit as the one who calls people because His heart is full of compassion and mercy.

“You will need to cultivate the attitude in your heart, the heart that has a strong sense that I am a sinner and imperfect and it is out of God's mercy that He has allowed me to serve in His Vineyard,” said the 58-year-old Bishop who has been at the helm of Kimberley Diocese since April 2021.

He added, “You will need to ask God for the grace to have this attitude in your heart and also the grace to be able to cooperate with this grace of God.”

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The South African Bishop who started his Episcopal ministry as the Auxiliary Bishop of South Africa’s Johannesburg Archdiocese in February 2016 said all Christians need to be devoted to the Divine Mercy.

“This message is not only addressed to the new Priest; it is also addressed to all of us; it is also addressed to me as your Bishop and Priests,” he emphasized, and added, “The message is also addressed to you as faithful; do not forget to have a devotion to that Divine Mercy in your parishes, sodality, youth group, choir families, and as individuals.”

In his homily, Bishop Tsoke also urged the Deacon he was about to ordain a Priest to serve all Christians regardless of their social class. 

He cautioned against discrimination, saying, “Sometimes, we as Priests and Bishops make this mistake of paying attention to those members of our Parish who are rich and powerful; those who can give us special envelopes often at the expense of neglecting those who are poor, vulnerable, and voiceless in our Parishes.”

He clarified, “I am not saying that you should ignore those members of the Church who are well off because they also need God; all I'm saying is be aware of such tendencies and mistakes and treat the people of God fairly and equally knowing that you are sent to make disciples of all Nations.”


He also urged the Deacon to embrace the spirit of servant leadership in his Priestly life, saying, “You should always remember that you are not a boss but a servant.”

Bishop Tsoke urged the Deacon to center his life around the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, which he said is the celebration of the Divine Mercy.

“If you decide to become a Priest dedicated to the Divine Mercy, we will be expecting you to celebrate the Eucharist every day as a Priest for the salvation of souls and forgiveness of their sins,” the South African Catholic Bishop said during the December 10 event.

Silas Mwale Isenjia is a Kenyan journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communication from Moi University in Kenya. Silas has vast experience in the Media production industry. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.