Zimbabwe – Don Bosco journey with Zimbabwe youth

20 May 2021

(ANS – Harare) – Since 1995 the Don Bosco Salesians are present in Zimbabwe, first in Harare (capital city) and then, since 2001, in Hwange. Two vibrant parishes, one dynamic youth centre, one secondary school and one technical college are the most visible venues of Don Bosco mission in this country (former Rhodesia) that became independent only in 1980.

Zimbabwe has a population of 17 million with 87% being Christians and with 108 Catholic secondary schools catering to 44,000 students. Among the 4 ZMB vice-province countries, Zimbabwe presents the most difficult social situation, with more than 4-5 million migrants who left the country for South Africa, UK, Australia, USA and other countries and continue to support their families with their revenues.

Zimbabwe counts already two SDB communities with 8 Salesians, with two growing Salesian Cooperators center (60 ASC) and large numbers of our Lay Mission Partners in both parishes, schools and youth centres - after 25 years there are already 4 Zimbabwe Salesian priests and another 10 Salesians in initial formation. Although between Harare and Hwange there is a distance of 800 km, all our candidates are directed for their 'Come and See' to Hwange with larger accommodation possibilities.

Last month, Don Bosco Hwange welcomed the first batch of 90 Form One (= Grade 8) students of the newly-opened “Don Bosco Secondary School”: boys and girls from this south Zimbabwe poor mining region. After 20 years of our presence in Hwange (town of 60,000), this is another visible expression of Salesian charismatic growth in this country.

Don Bosco Harare (Rector Fr. Tresphord Chota), the presence in the Capital, is developing around the 'All Saints' Parish with 4 centers with more than 10,000 Catholics and with a daily Oratory around the Salesian house, until recently also with a small Secondary school. With the encouragement of Harare Archbishop Robert Ndlovu, the Salesians are making one step forward with a long dreamt 'Salesian Youth Spirituality Animation Center' within the complex of the main parish center.

Don Bosco Hwange community (Rector Fr Simbarashe O. Muza), located within a large 28-hectare compound, is taking care of the fast-growing multicultural parish of St Theresa in Empumalanga (from 4 families in 1982 up to 316 families in 2021). The Don Bosco Technical College has already a long history, but the adequate facilities are growing now with the assistance of 40 lay mission partners-strong 'Project Foundation Committee' that assists the Salesians with education, legal, financial, engineering and coordinating teams.

“We congratulate the ZMB Vice Province to the steadfast development of the charism in this beautiful and also very challenged country, where many young people are waiting to meet Don Bosco on their life and faith journey!” Fr Václav Klement, Extraordinary Visitor “ad nutum” and “pro tempore” to ZMB, expresses with joy.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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