Bishops in the Southern Africa nation of Zambia have called on the country’s Members of Parliament (MPs) to consider withdrawing the Constitutional Amendment Bill of 2019 also known as Bill 10 from the floor of the House saying it does not reflect the constitutional desires of a majority of the citizens.
In a bid to support the efforts undertaken by Catholic Church leaders in Zambia in the fight against COVID-19, the representative of Pope Francis in the Southern Africa nation has donated three ventilators and N95 as well as surgical masks to benefit three hospitals, saying the donation was part of the Holy Father’s initiative to help “all the African countries.” The Apostolic Nuncio in the country, Archbishop Giafranco Gallone delivered the items to Bishop Moses Hamungole on behalf of the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops (ZCCB) on Monday, May 25. “I know that this is a small gesture in this moment, but the Holy Father is helping all the African countries (by) sending the same contribution,” Archbishop Gallone has been quoted as saying during the handing over ceremony at ZCCB Secretariat in Zambia’s capital, Lusaka. The Italian Prelate who represents Pope Francis in neighboring Malawi as well added in reference to the Holy Father, “It is his concern as a good father towards those that are suffering and do not have the necessary means to be able to cure themselves.”. The three ventilators will be used at Cardinal Adam Memorial Hospital, Lusaka, Chilonga Mission Hospital in Muchinga province, northeast Zambia and St. Dominics' Mission Hospital in the Copperbelt province, south of the country. The three hospitals, the Apostolic Nuncio noted, “are without proper instruments to help COVID-19 patients.” Zambia has recorded at least 920 cases, 336 recoveries and seven related deaths. Appreciating the donation from the Holy Father, Sr. Elizabeth Njovu from St. Dominics’ Mission Hospital noted that the ventilators “will ultimately save lives, make their mission work easy, and offer excellent response services in the three facilities.” “The health sector, being at the frontline in the fight against the scourge has faced the most impact mainly because the fight has taken a colossal amount of resources, which would have been allocated evenly to fights of other health issues,” Sr. Njovu said. During the handing over ceremony, the Apostolic Nuncio revealed that Pope Francis is also concerned about people who have lost jobs in Africa as a result of COVID-19, and who are affected by the looming hunger crisis. “Aided by his collaborators, he (Pope Francis) has great desire to find (the) right ways of implementing charitable interventions for a possible food emergency throughout Africa,” the Nuncio said and added, “We hope that the situation could be mitigated by the aid of the international community.” Reiterating the words of Pope Francis expressing his solidarity with those affected by the pandemic, the 57-year-old Prelate said, “I express my closeness to those who are suffering from COVID-19, to those who are dedicated to their care and to all those who, in any way, are suffering from the pandemic.”
Members of the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops (ZCCB) have resolved to have individual Local Ordinaries in the Southern African nation make “the final decision” on the resumption of liturgical celebrations in their respective dioceses, including the measures to curb the possible spread of COVID-19.
Leaders representing various Church groupings in Zambia have, in a collective statement, “strongly condemned” the violation of press freedom in their country following multiple incidents when those at the helm of the main opposition party have been barred from scheduled radio programs or their programs disrupted midway.
Plans are underway in Africa to mark the 5th anniversary of Pope Francis’ Encyclical Letter on the environment, Laudato Si’ through a series of activities, which the Global Catholic Climate Movement in Africa (GCCM Africa) is spearheading amid COVID-19 restrictions, officials involved in organizing the weeklong event dubbed “Laudato Si’ Week” have told ACI Africa.
In a bid to keep vulnerable children in Zambia safe during the COVID-19 crisis, the female branch of the Salesians of Don Bosco, Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, have undertaken various initiatives to support the children.
The leadership of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) in Zambia and Malawi has expressed concerns over inequality and the level of poverty in the Southern Africa nation of Zambia amid COVID-19, calling on the government to work toward addressing the gap and give an opportunity for affected people to bounce back.
The newly elected Diocesan Administrator of Zambia’s Mpika Diocese, Fr. Justin Matepa is looking toward the collaboration of the people of God in his diocese to accomplish the ministry of running the diocese until the Vatican appoints a Local Ordinary, he has told ACI Africa.
At a time when governments across the globe have been forced to expend their resources in the fight against the spread of COVID-19, Bishops in the southern Africa nation of Zambia are encouraging the people of God in their country to reach out to the poor and vulnerable in their midst rather than expect foreign donations.
A Catholic Bishop in Zambia has died just two days after he issued a statement with directives on COVID-19, which included the “indefinite closure of all Major Seminaries” in the Southern Africa nation.
While there has not been a reported case of COVID-19 in Zimbabwe, Catholic leaders in the country that is situated in Southern Africa have, as a precautionary measure, advised children, the sick, the elderly and other vulnerable groups not to attend public Mass on Sunday, in adherence to measures put in place by the government.
The reported use of a chemical on people to immobilize and attack them that has resulted in deaths and injuries in various places in Zambia has caught the attention of the Catholic Bishops in the Southern Africa nation. They have, in a collective statement, decried the acts and termed them “criminal and subversive activities.”
Almost a month after the World Food Programme (WFP) warned that a hunger crisis 'on scale we've not seen before' is looming in Southern Africa with 45 million people in need of urgent food aid, the global confederation of Catholic relief agencies, Caritas Internationalis, is helping, through its emergency programs, alleviate the hunger situation in Zambia and Zimbabwe, two of the most hard-hit countries.
In an effort to respond to Pope Francis’ call that all local churches across the globe set working systems to address sexual crimes committed by clerics and religious, the Institute of Canon Law at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) has expanded admissions into its Canon Law training.
At a meeting bringing together a section of Church personnel serving in Bishops’ conferences that constitute the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences of Eastern Africa (AMECEA), a Zambian Prelate has called for the sense of novelty and creativity in the day to day tasks characterized with “inevitable challenges.”
In a collective statement issued at the conclusion of their three-day maiden consultative meeting, the Catholic Bishops in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe have outlined their short-term intention to remain within their respective regional Bishops’ conferences and the long-term one of delinking their national conferences to form a sub-regional Bishops’ Conference comprising the three Southern Africa nations.
On the occasion of the 24th World Day for Consecrated Life marked February 2, the Bishops in Zambia have expressed gratitude for the various apostolates of consecrated persons that make visible the presence of Jesus among the people of God in the Southern Africa nation.
At the opening of the ongoing Sub-regional consultative meeting, the first-ever, that has brought together Catholic Bishops in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe, Zambian President Edgar Lungu who officially opened the gathering lauded the initiative of the Church leaders saying the convention is in line with the desire to unite the three countries, which have a lot in common.
Having dedicated the year 2020 to the reflection of the Word of God with the aim “to venerate, celebrate, study, disseminate and live” the message in the Sacred Scriptures, the Bishops in the Southern African nation of Zambia have emphasized the need to share the word of God, reaching out to various groups in their country with specific recommendations.
In an effort to promote sustainability and self-reliance in local Churches across the Eastern Africa region, representatives of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) under the institution’s capacity building project are currently in Zambia for a two-week training in financial management of Church institutions, the Coordinator of the project has told ACI Africa.