Mission: Mongu-St. Agatha Parish
Population: Approximately 45,000
St. Agatha Parish is situated at the heart of Kapulanga Compound, a popular and difficult area which faces many social challenges: poverty, unemployment, HIV/AIDS, difficult access to water, inappropriate sanitation, temporal homes, etc. St Agatha was initially part of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish (Cathedral) and it was established as a Parish, with 4 out-stations, in 1997.
The Catholic Community of St. Agatha is a lively and enthusiastic group of people which strives to grow in the sense of belonging; this is noticeable in the ever-growing number of people getting involved in different Parish activities. There are active groups of youth, women, Parish Council, liturgical committee and Choirs. Vocations to the priesthood and religious life are emerging. The Parish is run by a diocesan priest.
The predominant tribe in the whole Western Province is the Lozi. The Lozis have many traditional rites celebrated like the puberty initiation rite for girls and the “Kuomboka” Ceremony held annually. The main economic activities of the people are farming, fishing, agriculture and small businesses.
The political and social situation in Mongu deteriorated in 2010. Some organized groups emerged expressing discontent on various social and political issues. In October 2010 Mongu experienced riots which were repeated with more violence in January 2011. The main issues being addressed by the various groups are the lack of development in Western Province and the need to have the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 restored. More radical groups were also calling for the resignation of the present king or Litunga and for secession from Zambia.
Western Province is an area of first Evangelisation, with only 9% of the population being catholic. The Evangelical Churches were the first to reach this Province in the late 1800s. There are more than ten Christian Denominations in Mongu. The Diocese of Mongu was erected on 14th June 1997. The Diocese is trying to develop a sense of ownership of the Church by the local Christian Community and self-sustainability is one of the pastoral priorities, even though is still a great challenge.
The presence of the CMS
Mongu community was officially started on the 21st February 2004,
Objectives of our presence:
The formation of leaders and catechists in Mongu Diocese
The missionary animation of the local Church and
The support of Kalabo CMS community
Women’s Ministry in St. Agatha Parish which involves supporting and empowering women through Women’s Clubs with basic education, entrepreneurship, microcredit projects, counseling and Christian and human formation.
Youth Ministry at St. Agatha Parish which involves supporting and empowering young people with School sponsorships, microcredit projects, agricultural training, Missionary education, vocation animation and Christian-human formation.
Pastoral Ministry at St. Agatha Parish which involves coordinating Parish catechetical programmes; supporting and empowering lay leaders, catechizers and liturgical teams through specific training.
Catechetics at Diocesan Level which involves the production of catechetical materials in Silozi language; the bringing about of training and formation for the Volunteer Catechizers of all the Parishes; the production and promotion of common Diocesan Guidelines on Catechesis and the production of Radio Programmes on the Catholic Faith and life.