On September 15th, this year I had a great opportunity to visit the office of the Auxiliary Bishop of Dar es Salaam, Rt. Rev. Titus Joseph Mdoe and speak with him about the encyclical ‘Laudato Si’, the Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM) and the Catholic Youth Network for Environmental Sustainability in Africa (CYNESA).
However, Bishop Mdoe advised us to start engaging this knowledge with our local parishes through Christian community, youth groups, apostolic associations and the lays association. He insisted that we should have something tangible so that it can be witnessed with others and attract them to join us in our mission.
We also discussed on how we could have the Swahili version of the encyclical, he said they are working on that though he did not promise when it will be ready because it will take a bit of time for preparations. At final remarks he was very pleased of my visit and invite me at any time when I need his assistance and so I left him with the petition so that he can pass to his fellow bishops, priests and his guests at his office.
On my way back I passed at Paulines Bookshop close to the St. Joseph Cathedral and managed by the congregation of the Daughters of St. Paul, to share a bit on the encyclical and to invite them to sign the petition. Sister accepted to sign the petition and encouraged us on this movement also she showed me a copy of the Laudato Si’ in English version and I asked her if they would have translated it into Swahili so that it can reach many Catholics in Tanzania. According to sister, she said that they are facing lots challenges as most of them are Kenyans so they don’t have Swahili nuns’ expert in translating into Swahili and if they do it with Kenyan accent the books are being criticized when they bring them to Tanzania. She advised me to be patient and wait for a response from the Tanzania Episcopal Conference. Again, I left a copy of the petition sheet with her and invited more signatures from her congregation.
The Archdiocese of Dar-es-Salaam is an ecclesiastical territory or diocese of the Roman Catholic Church in Tanzania. It was erected as the Apostolic Prefecture of Southern Zanguebar by Pope Leo XIII on November 16, 1887, and promoted to the Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Zanguebar on September 15, 1902. It was renamed by Pope Pius X as the Apostolic Vicariate of Dar-es-Salaam on August 10, 1906, and elevated to the rank of a metropolitan archdiocese by Pope Pius XII on March 25, 1953.
The archdiocese’s mother church and thus seat of its archbishop is St. Joseph’s Cathedral. The current Archbishop of Dar-es-Salaam is Cardinal Polycarp Pengo.