Fr. Evandro Visits Morogoro: Part 1

Fr. Jim Donohue.

Early in the new year, Fr. Evandro Miranda Rosa, C.R., our Superior General in Rome, contacted me about the possibility of coming to Tanzania for a short visit with our new Econ General, Mr. Francesco Ruspoli. Of course, we were all very happy to welcome them to the Tanzanian Mission. The Mission falls under the jurisdiction of the Superior General, so it would be an opportunity for him to see things first-hand. Fr. Evandro had visited about six years ago, but it would be the first visit for Mr. Ruspoli. Also, the General Chapter last summer passed twenty-seven resolutions concerning Tanzania—things to clarify, revise, improve, and innovate—and this would be an opportunity to begin this six-year process.

Fr. Evandro and Mr. Ruspoli were greeted by singing and then enjoyed a good meal of chicken and chips and tomato-cucumber-onion salad…and ice cream!

You might notice that we have Fr. Evandro’s photo on the wall with a photo of the Holy Father Francis, our pope, and a photo of Bishop Lazarus, our local bishop.

Fr. Evandro Visits 1-6

We visited a local lawyer and the land office to ensure that our two properties in Morogoro are properly registered and that all land tax payments are up to date. Tanzania owns all the land in the country, and everyone, citizen or foreigner, leases the land for 33, 66, or 99 years, and then renews the lease. We discovered that the present seminary has a 33-year lease, and the new undeveloped land has a 66-year lease. The lawyer explained how we could adjust the 33-year lease to a 66-year lease.

Fr. Evandro and Francesco joined in all the seminary activities, including adoration and benediction on Thursday evening. It was very hot, and the electricity had gone out, so we could not even turn on the small fans that we have. Perspiration dripped off everyone! I had the most vestments on but complained the least! 😊 😊 😊

We were able to make a short visit to Jordan University College where our seminarians study Philosophy and Theology. This is a reading room at the library. It was very crowded because students had exams the next week.

We visited the chapel at Jordan University College. Outside is a painting of the Ugandan Martyrs. There were 22 Catholic converts and 23 Anglican converts in the historical kingdom of Buganda (now part of Uganda) who were executed between January 31, 1885 and January 27, 1187. The 22 Catholic martyrs were canonized in 1964 by Pope Paul VI.

The sanctuary of the chapel has some beautiful paintings of the call of Abraham, the Angel Gabriel’s annunciation to Mary, the Holy Spirit descending upon Mary and the Apostles at Pentecost, and the Risen Jesus.

Interestingly, at the same time that Fr. Evandro was visiting Tanzania, the Tanzanian president, Samia Suluhu Hassan (since March 19, 2021), was visiting Pope Francis in Rome.  You can read about her visit here by clicking here.  

More to come on

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