Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Benedictines Union of Tanzania Members Meet at Hanga Abbey

The Benectine Union of Tanzania is a communion of superiors of Benedictine communities of men and women in Tanzania. They meet annually to share and discuss some topics and issues experienced in their communities. This year the meeting was hosted by Hanga Abbey. It was held from November 6th to November 10th. At the meeting the representatives were from abbeys of Peramiho, Ndanda, Hanga, and Mvimwa; and from convents of Tutzing Missionaries of Peramiho and Ndanda, Sisters of Ndolo in Ndanda, and Sisters of Camaldolese of Mafinga.

Currently the head of the Union is Sister Caritas Swai, OSB, the superior of Ndolo Sisters in Ndanda. The secretary is Fr. Damas Komba, OSB, of Peramiho abbey.

At the abbey members were hosted at St. Pirmin's Guest House for meetings and sleeping rooms. At some point during their stay and meetings members had the opportunity of visit
workshops of the abbey as well as schools and other institutions.

Members of the Benedictines Union of Tanzania at sessions

Below: visiting Hanga Seminary

Below: at Nakagugu Formation House

Friday, October 27, 2017

St. Benedict Graduation, October 2017

The 14th of October, 2017, it was another memorable day of the year for St. Benedict Scondary Schoool at Hanga. The school has two campuses: for girls at Hanga village center and for boys three kilometets west of Hanga village. Students, teachers, relatives and friends gathered for the 20 graduation at the School ground at Hanga. The guest of honor was Mr. John Msweke, the headmaster of a nearby Secondary School of Boys in Songean municipality. A total of 148 students were graduating; 98 were girls and 51 were boys.

As customary, the day began with Holy Mass at the abbey church followed by celebration with dances, dramas, poems, songs and speeches from different speakers at the school grounds, and not to forget a decent meal and drinks.

Congratulations to the graduating students for their achievements and thanks to their teachers for their dedication to educate the young.

Above; Fr. Mugaga, the headmaster, with the students in front of the abbey church

Monday, September 4, 2017

Installation of the New Abbtot at Mvimwa Abbey

The monks of Mvimwa  abbey (a foundation of Hanga abbey) in Sumbawanga, southwest Tanzania, elected their new abbot, abbot Pambo Mkorwe, OSB, late May this year 2017. He was installed on the 26 of August, 2017. Abbot Pambo is the third abbot of the abbey. He succeeds abbot Dennis Ndomba, OSB. The first abbof of the community was the late abbot Basil Ngaponda, OSB.

Abbot Pambo made his solemn profession on 11 July 1998, and was ordained on 10 July, 2005. At the time of election he was in Germany serving as the secretary to the archabbot of St. Ottilien Congregation after his degree in Canon Law.

Present at the installation of abbot Pambo were five bishops from dioceses of Mbeya, Njombe, Tabora, Singida, and Sumbawanga. The bishop of Sumbawanga was the bishop presiding at mass and did the installation blessing. Four abbots were also present: abbot Octavian Massingo,OSB, of Hanga Abbey, abbot Thadei Mhagama, OSB, (retired abbot of Hanga abbey), abbot Placidus Mtunguja, OSB,  of Ndanda abbey, and abbot Romain Bota, OSB, from Agbang, Togo.

Congratulations to Abbot Pambo and we pray for the Holy Spirit to guide him in his leadership role.

Abbot Pambo in the middle holding a crozier.

Abbot Pambo with Anne Makinda, former member of the parliament, in Tanzania.

From left: abbot of Octavian of Hanga abbey, abbot Placidus of Ndanda abbey, abbot Pambo, abbot Romain of Agbang, Togo, and retired abbot of Hanga abbey - abbot Thadei.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Celebrating Jubilees and Monastic Professions, 2017

July 11th, 2017 it was a memorable day for the monks of Hanga Abbey. Some of their members celebrated jubilees and some made their monastic professions. Frater Alfons Kibiki, OSB, celebrated his 50 jubilee of monastic profession. Fr. Ludovick Kapinga, OSB, celebrated his 25 anniversary in his priesthood. In the 25th monastic life anniversary celebration were Fraters Patrick Mwinuka, OSB, Melkior Logo and Eusebius Msomi, OSB. Four novices made their first monastic professions.

The archibishop of Songea, Rev. Damian Dallu, presided at the mass and abbot Octavian Massingo, OSB, conducted the ritual for renewal of vows of the jubilarians and received the four novices into monastic professions.

Better yet, a day before, eight young men were received in the postulancy. These eight men will begin monastic training as novices in a year. And five former postulants were admitted to the stage of canonical year of monastic training.

Thanks be to God for the blessing with vocations at the abbey.

Frate Alfons Kibiki, OSB, holding his jubilee wooden staff.

The Jubilarians: from left, Fr. Ludovick Kapainga, OSB, Frater Robert Nziku, OSB (of Mvimwa - 25 monastic nniversary), Frater Eusebius Msomi, OSB, Frater Melkior Logo, OSB, Frater Patrick Mwinuka, OSB, and Frater Alfons Kibiki, OSB.

The five newly professed monks

The eight postulants

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Frater William, OSB, Graduates as a Teacher

Our confrere Frater William, OSB, graduated this year 2017 in June with diploma in education as a teacher. He graduated at a Benedictine college in Sumbawanga, south west of Tanzania. The college is run by monks of Mvimwa abbey, a foundation of Hanga abbey.

An honorary dinner was held at the abbey for Frater William to congratulate him for his achievement. Indeed his career is in great need at the abbey since we have five schools all in need of teachers. The schools are Hanga Religious Seminary, St. Benedict Secondary School (with two separate campuses for girls and boys), Hanga Trade School and St. Laurent Pre & Primary School.

We wish Frater William success in his teaching career.

Below some pictures of Frater William

Friday, June 23, 2017

Novices Attend Canon Law Seminar

A joint seminar was held at Chipole convent, in the archdiocese of Songea, in mid May 2017, for novices of Hanga Abbey and Chipole Benedictine convent of sisters. The seminar was on Canon Law on religious life to educate these young religious men and women. The deliverer of the seminar was a Fransiscan Friar Dr. Fr. Nachingulu, OFM Capuchin. Frater Achiles, OSB, the novice master of Hanga Abbey and Sister Lwanga, the novice-mistress of Chipole Convent also attended the seminar. Indeed knowing the law of life is good, but observing the spirit of the law is the best.

In the photo above from left: Frater Achiles, OSB, Fr. Nachingulu, OFM Cap,  and Sister Lwanga, OSB.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Fr. Winfrid Mlowe, OSB, of Hanga Abbey Dies

One of the earliest monks of Hanga Abbey and the founder of Hanga Religious Seminary, Fr. Winfrid Mlowe, OSB, died on May 12, 2017. Fr. Winfrid has been suffering parkinson disease for over 15 years. His death was caused by uncontrolable coughing. He succumbed to death as he was being rushed to a hospital. Fr. Mlowe spent his last three years of his life at Imiliwaha Sisters Convent, in Njombe diocese, serving the nuns in confessions and masses.

At abbey he held many key positions. He was a novice master for many years and he was a no nonsense monk. He also was the first monk of Hanga conventual Priory to be an accountant. In 1978 he was charged by conventual Prior Gregory Mwageni, OSB, to establish Hanga Religious Seminary in cooperation with the Augustinian monks who just come to the archdiocese of Songea from Spain.

In 1989 he was elected the prior of Hanga Monastery until 1993 when the monastery became an abbey. Latter he was assigned to Katibunga monastery, Zambia. Due to his dwindling health and signs of parkinson disease he returned to Tanzania staying at Nole Farm in Njombe.

Indeed, of all that he did for the community of Hanga abbey, he will particularly be remembered for his legacy in sending many monks to schools and establishing Hanga Religious Seminary.

We pray that the good Lord rewards him with eternal life for which he dedicated his life.

Frater Steven Mwampamba of Hanga Dies

When you speak of Hanga Trade School or Hanga Vocational Training School you cannot avoid thinking of our beloved
Frater Steven Mwampamba, OSB, who passed from this world to heaven early May 2017. Frater Mwampamba was the founder of Hanga Trade School in the 70's after he was schooled in architecture. And all his life after founding the school he has never left his post of being a teacher and formator of the students at the school. Indeed anybody who has been to Hanga Trade School will not find the school the same without him.  Many know him sitting by the mango tree by the gate to the school compound passing time by himself or with friends and fellow monks; not anymore - unfortunately!

Frater Steven has been battling diabetes for many years. In 2016 he developed kidney problems and was being treated at the referral hospital in Mbeya, southwest Tanzania. He seemed to be improving but things turned to the worst and he died on April 30 while being treated.

May he rest in peace.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Palm Sunday Celebration at Hanga

Obbot Octavian Massingo, OSB, led and presided the mass of the Passion Sunday at the abbey this year (2017). With only one year as the abbot of the abbey this was his first mass on Palm Sunday. Together with the monks there there also students from the abbey schools: seminary, St. Benedict, Hanga Trade School and Nakagugu Formation House.