On Sunday, 14 May 2023, Mgr Oscar NGOY, CSSp. Bishop of the Diocese of Kongolo, celebrated in the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Mary, the Solemn Mass of the opening of the diocesan investigation on the Cause for the beatification or declaration of martyrdom of the servants of God Jean Marie Godefroid, priest and his twenty companions, missionaries of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit, assassinated in Kongolo on January 1st 1962.
Christians from all the parishes of the centre took part in this Mass, concelebrated by priests from different deaneries of the diocese, Spiritans working in the diocese and the delegate of the provincial superior.
The Bishop focused his homily on the words of Jesus: “If a grain of wheat falls to the ground and does not die, it remains alone; if it dies, it bears much fruit” (Jn 12:24). He urged the faithful to bear witness to their faith in all circumstances, following the example of these missionaries who have left the Church a beautiful example of self-denial, fidelity to the mission entrusted to them by the Church; an example of love of Christ and neighbour which culminates in the supreme sacrifice.
Bishop Ngoy asked the Christians of his diocese to pray a lot so that one day our missionaries will be beatified. Since the Holy See has already given the “nihil obstat”, the local Ordinary proceeded to appoint the members of the diocesan investigation team who took the oath during this Mass in a packed cathedral. In the assembly, some witnesses of these events were present, including a former minor seminarian, a pupil of these missionaries, and nuns of the Immaculate Heart of Mary of Kongolo who survived the massacre.
The Family of God Church in Kongolo is very happy to see the beginning of the long awaited investigation.
For the diocese of Kongolo
As Spiritans, let us continue to join our prayers with those of the many faithful so that these Spiritan martyrs, our Blessed and our Founders, may one day be fully raised on the altar of the Church.
Orlando Zanovelli, CSSp