Finally the day dawned after a long awaiting. So much was spoken, so much was thought of and a great amount of preparation had followed to organize the inauguration of the Golden Jubilee of the Parish of St. Martin of Tours, Mpandangindo, in the Archdiocese of Songea. On November 1st after the Solemn Eucharist celebration of the Feast of All the Saints, at 8 am, the Blessed Sacrament was exposed for adoration for 24 hours in preparation for the novena to begin of St. Martin of Tours. Rev. Fr. Lucius Mahundi, the Parish Priest of Kitura of the diocese of Mbinga who came to preach for the novena was the main celebrant for the feast of All the Saints. After the mass Fr. Roshan Pinto the Parish Priest exposed the Blessed Sacrament for the 24 hours of adoration. Every half an hour the Small Christian Communities, the Out Stations, Pious Associations along with Priests and Nuns took the turn to adore the Blessed Sacrament till 8 am next day. According to their turn each group came and conducted the adoration. At 7am on 2nd there was the common adoration for an hour and it was concluded with the blessing. Then all present went out to hoist the flag of St. Martin of Tours to mark the beginning of the novena. Fr. Lucius Mahundi blessed the flag and hoisted it. After that the Holy Eucharist began, presided by Fr. Lucius, he preached the first novena on the First Commandment of the God, the main theme being “The Commandments of God” during the novena days. This day happened to be “All Souls Day”. But every day good number of people attended the novena and Fr. Lucius did a very good job of preaching the Word of God on the Ten Commandments.

After a good external as well as spiritual preparation the Feast of St. Martin of Tours and the Inauguration of the Golden Jubilee Year was celebrated on 11 of November in a very grand manner. Very Rev. Fr. Elius Malale ocd, the 2nd Councillor of the Vicariate of Tanzania was the main celebrant who preached a meaningful sermon. Eucharist was concelebrated by ten priests among whom was Rev. Fr. Castor Guliama, Rector of Peramiho Major Seminary, Fr. Lucius Marquardt OSB one of the earlier Benedictine Parish Priests, three priests of the Congregation of St. Therese, one from Congregation of Missionaries, Fr. Lucius Mahundi who was preaching the novenas, then three Community Priests: Fr.Roshan Pinto, Fr. Baptist Fernandes and Fr. Raymond Santhanaz. Before the Penitential Rite Fr. Roshan Pinto the Parish Priest welcomed all the guests and all who had gathered. After that was the inauguration and blessing of the Jubilee Cross and Jubilee Emblem by the main celebrant. There were around 15 sisters belonging to different Congregations. For the first time we also had a few Government Officials of the village as invited guests along with the Muslim Priest (Shehe). Besides, for the first time there was also a recording for Radio Maria. Sr. Tuzo Nyoni OSB who is in charge of recording came in fact to give live broadcast of the celebration but could not, since the network was not good. But she recorded the programme and telecasted it at 9 pm the same day. After the Communion the main celebrant was felicitated on behalf of the Vicar of the Carmelites. After that the Calendar 2018 of the Parish was inaugurated by the main celebrant and it was auctioned in order to collect some money for the Jubilee celebration. And there was a good response from the guests and the parishioners. Fr. Lucius OSB was given a chance to greet people since he came to his old Parish after a long time. Fr. Rector also spoke a few words greeting the people. Then Fr. Raymond thanked all the guests, the parishioners and all those who made the day successful. There was also reading of the report of the Jubilee Year by the President of the Jubilee Committee. After which the main celebrant also spoke congratulating and thanking all. After the mass all went out to lower the flag as sign of conclusion of the feast which was hoisted on the first day of the novena. Then there was the blessing of the foundation stone of the Parish Offices which would be built in the immediate future. Then followed the photo session and a little dance by children and grown-ups. Later food was served for the guests and those who had contributed. The jubilee celebration would be on 14th November 2018. All are welcome.

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