Speech by Most Rev. Archbishop Mgr. Thomas Luke Msusa SMM.


MY deepest sympathy to the entire FIC community, the bishop of Chikhwawa diocese, the Vicar General of the archdiocese, priests, seminarians, Reverend sisters and all of you my brothers in Christ present here.

A dark cloud hangs over this day and I experience the sudden loss of my arms and legs with this event. Here lies a man who became the arms and legs of the Archdiocese. He walked to the people and reached out with his hands and feet of charily to the poor that needed help. Here lies man who extended evangelization through works of charity. He practiced the gospel values and made them the reason for his calling to religious brotherhood.

He never stopped at one point to ask them if they were Catholic or not, Christian or not but it was his heart that probed the root cause of poverty. He witnessed his Christian values to all people that met him.
This brother has taught us to be forthright in our approach to apostolic work. The challenge is to the FIC community. What is it that we have learned from him? Do we have to wait for a man of eighty six years to teach us how to perform works of charity? He did his part. Will there be somebody alter hirn"? Surely we do not need to wait for FIC brothers to reach out to us. We all have gifts which we can share with other people. The, pastoral letter written by we your bishops , encourages sharing among Malawians because we all have something unique.

My brothers and sisters in Christ., the man lying here found a way of reaching the people. He walked to the people and found them in their humble homes. He did not spend long hours complaining at how he will reach the people. He found a way of reaching the people. He gave the poor and sick the hope that they wanted. He gave them the love that they needed.

My brothers and sisters, most at times, the sick people need our encouragement. They need our presence. They need somebody just to talk to them. They are not looking for material things. They wait for an assuring hand that offers hope. They are looking for somebody to talk vvith. Our poor people are lonely and feel dejected. They need you and me to be near them. We all have a responsibility to take care of the suffering in the society. My brother lying here, shared his time with the people.

The bishops have written that there is growing poverty in Malawi because people have become selfish. There has been a growing gap between the rich and the poor to such art extent that it has reached worrying proportions. The poor have lost hope that life may one day become better for them. As bishops, we have observed that this has been caused by the lack of sharing among us. We have failed to reach out to one another. There is growing; corruption among us which has resulted into accumulation of wealth at the expense of the poor. My brother lying here never wanted to keep everything for himself.

My brothers and sisters, you have heard that he did not abandon his work by finding a excuses. He went to his normal work but found time to give others a smile. It is true chat he was born in Holland but he lived here. He shared the life of a Malawian. The Netherlands is just a place of birth but the real life was lived in Malawi with Malawians. To till's extent, we could say that his heart and mind was Malawian.
He was a religious and enjoyed to be a religious in Malawi.

You have heard of the recent stories how his heart went out top those who had no food. Nobody asked him to share food with the people but his desire to alleviate suffering made him so.

My brothers and sisters, those people who were receiving this food lined up here where the mass is taking place. This was a place of poor people benefitting from the benevolence of one man. Today the very place where poor people got their livelihood from food donation is where the rich are congregated to bid him farewell. Tomorrow, the people will not gather here. They will be surprised that the man who cared for them is no longer. Obviously, many of them will not understand. They will move round the compound in disbelief and ask why this could happen at this time.

We must pray for one another that we should be moved by the suffering of other people and do something about it.