Catholics ordain seven priests

Israel Nkate

Israel Nkate

After seven years of intensive training to serve the Lord, eight young men from across Southern Africa were the focus of attention at the Roman Catholic Church's archdiocese of Pretoria at the weekend.

The eight - three South Africans, a Congolese, two Malawians, a Tanzanian and a man from Botswana - were ordained in Temba, North West, amid huge celebrations.

The ordination was conducted by Bishop George Daniel and the Deacon of North West, Victor Phalana.

The hymns rang out in Swahili and Chichewa to cater for Deacon Emile Kayembe, 36, from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Moses Mafui, 34, Patrick Phiri, 32, from Malawi and Michael Maluku, 32, from Tanzania.

South Africa was represented by Elias Senona, 26, Amos Masemola, 29, and Samuel Setshedi, 39. Richard Rathari, 28, from Botswana was also ordained. They all trained at St Vianney Seminary in Waterkloof, Pretoria.

The message of the day was based on the lives of saints Paul and Peter. Phalana said the two saints were role models of the church.

Phalana said the message would encourage them to be ready to serve the rich and the poor and spread the gospel of God.

The ordained helped to serve holy communion. They took a vow of celibacy, giving their lives up to God. Phalana said celibacy would make them free from marriage stress that can separate them from God. They will serve the community and God wholeheartedly.