Comboni Lay Missionaries

Aspirants CLM meeting in Ghana


We held our meeting this 14th Feb. We first have a talk on Comboni Spirituality which was presented by our Spiritual Director Fr Godwin Kornu. First of all, he showed us the books that can help us in our journey: The Writings of Comboni, The passion of a life of Don Lozano, We the Heirs of Francesco Pierli. He then explained the word Spirituality by the way a person experiences God, him or herself and the world he/she is part of. The spirituality must be shaped by Christ but it is influenced by the time and our environment. And talking about the spirituality of a person demands to pass through the life, the history of the person, the way he experiences God. And this experience of an individual is unique. Father led us to discover that the “loving heart is a suffering heart” and “what is good is not relative” which means what is good cannot be determined by a tradition or a culture. What is good is good by itself. The relativism is one of the points that the Pope Emeritus Benedict condemned lots. (The theme is very broad so for now it is just an introduction).

GhanaAfter the presentation, we moved on for some discussions. The minutes of the last meeting was read and few corrections made. From the matters arisen, we agreed to levy ourselves with an amount which can be paid from now up to the next second meeting. At last, we decided to have a recollection on the 14th March to redo ourselves in the Lenten Season. The meeting was then moved to closure with prayer and benediction. After this, we had an agape.

Justin Nougnui, coordinator.

CLM Group Meeting in Ghana

Reunion en Ghana

On the 21st October 2014, I met the Father Provincial about the journey of the CLM Aspirants. A chaplain was given to us and a new strategy was defined by the Province about us. Our chaplain is Rev. Fr Godwin Kornu. Since then, we were planning to meet and this 5th December, we held our 17th meeting at Mafi-Kumase the Quasi Parish where our chaplain is. We were in all 8 lays with our chaplain. After the opening prayer, we proceeded with the Spiritual Reading from He lived only for Africa by B. Ward and A. Mondini. The passage read was the Experience of the Cross. For the first meeting with our chaplain, we introduced ourselves. From our previous meeting’s minutes, we heard about the work of two Committees, Formation and Fund Raising. The two Committees reflected upon the formation process and the various ways of generating income. Their suggestions need now critical analysis and for that matter, any decision was not taken, for us to go and reflect more about the issues with the help of our chaplain. The report about our activities since the beginning was then given. Our chaplain took then the speech to tell us the journey he has to make with us. His service is to form us, a spiritual formation which involves”lay, Christian, missionary and Combonian formation”. He explained how he intended to proceed with us: themes to present, recollections, retreats… The place, time and date were at once decided for the coming meeting and the topic to talk about. After this, few matters were discussed and the meeting came to its end with the concluding prayer (Prayer of the Comboni Family) with blessing. We took our family picture and the lunch before departing from the place.

We are very happy of the attention and zeal of the Province towards us and we thank, of all our heart, for all the decision taken for our spiritual and vocational growth. We saw how serious and dedicated our chaplain is. The experience he had with CLM when he was at Chicago and also some years in formation predisposed him for this service assigned to him by the Fr Provincial and His Counsel. May the Lord strengthen him spiritually to strengthen us and lead us on Comboni’s steps. We are so blessed because we are surrounded by so dedicated persons and zealous priests who believe in the CLM reality. May we too be inspired and ceased by their missionary and combonian zeal.

Justin Nougnui, coordinator.

Events in Ghana

Ghana1. We met in a village called Dadome some teachers sponsored by In My Father’s House. The target was to sow in their heart the desire to sacrifice themselves for the proclamation of the Good News to the poorest and abandoned. The fact that they were sponsored by IMFH is a predisposition to make such step. IMFH is an Institution witnessing the Good News to the “little ones.” They agreed to start the journey with the CLM. We then planned to be meeting. The coming meeting with them is on the 28th June.

Ghana2. At IMFH, taking advantage of the visit of Knights and Ladies of St John, we let them know about us. As they have already the desire to be closer to the children, they are a land that can produce committed and zealous CLM. We explained who we are and what we are doing to them. Fruit has started coming out already.

3. The Provincial Council of MCCJ has appointed two priests to journey with us. They are Rev. Fr Jean de Dieu Hounongbe (Vocation promoter) and Rev. Fr Yves Gbenou (member of the Provincial Council). Rev. Fr Abel Gueli (Mission Animation Commission secretary) is appointed to represent the MCCJ at the coming continental meeting. We are very happy about the way God is leading us and thank the Provincial Council for all their attention on the lays and their effort to give us the adequate formation as sharers of the same combonian charism.

Ghana4. Talking about the involvement of MCCJ in our journey, we would like to thank God for the fortieth priesthood anniversary of Rev. Fr Joseph Rabbiosi. He is up till now the CLM chaplain. He gave himself totally for the good and consolidation of the CLM. He is the one closer to us, provides advices and show us the way we have to engage ourselves. We thank God for his life and pray that he may become a “holy and capable missionary.”

5. The 24th May, we held our 13th meeting at IMFH. As usual now, we have first participated to the Eucharist. We then met parents of some Senior High School students (students who are under the sponsorship of IMFH). The target was to involve them in their children schooling. The spirit to “save Africa by Africa”, “African should take their destiny in hands” is here our driven strength. Some of the children can be taken care of by their relatives and it is our purpose.


After this meeting, we continued with our CLM monthly meeting. Among the various points discussed are our CLM structure, the letter head with logo, the various ways of raising found for CLM. We thought also on the way to start raising some funds within IMFH to support the same Institution (this is based on an experience in Layibi with the workers of Good Samaritain). The coordinator made the annual report of our group which we all passed through to see the way we are journeying. The challenges are many. The coming meeting will be on the 28th June. We expect Fr Jean de Dieu and Yves Gbenou being among us to continue the journey with us.

Justin Nougnui, coordinator.

Recent events in Ghana:

  1. Golden jubilee of MCCJ arrival in the province.

It is now 50 years that the MCCJ came in the province. The climax of the event was the mass at the cathedral of Lome (Togo) on the 19th January. We were represented by two of our members Mr Avorgbedor Promise and Mrs Kumazah Fidelia. The General Father of MCCJ, Fr Sanchez was also present as his visit he pays to the province.

2. Our presence at MCCJ general assembly.

The priests and brothers of the Comboni family in the province met at Lome from Monday 20th to Friday 24th January for their annual general assembly. We were present on Thursday to present our 2013 report.  The report was presented by Justin Nougnui the coordinator of the group. He briefed the Assembly about what we have done in 2013 and what we are planning to do in this new year. I was accompanied by Mr Seade Wisdom, administrator of In My Father’s House who said a word about the Institution. The third person, Mr Azumah Vivien, a youth (whose formation we are in charge of) was just introduced.  During a pause, a family picture was taken. It is the second time such report is made and I am happy that we had that opportunity to let ourselves known. May God help us to become truly ‘the most efficient way to lead people to the true faith’.

3. Our 10th meeting this 25th Jan.

a) As usual now, we started by meeting the youth at IMFH. The topic this time is to let them be aware about the various branches of course they can read in the tertiary institution and the skills they have acquired up till now that can help them for the future. The theme was presented by Mr Abotsi James (newly appointed assistant secretary). For the next time, the theme will concern an aspect of a Christian life.

b) In our main meeting, we plan for the year, the various activities in which we can go through during the year. As part of it is a meeting in February with some teachers for CLM vocation promotion. In March, we will go for retreat to be nourished spiritually in the Lenten season.

c) We finished the main part of our constitution. On this 25th Jan, 2014 the Feast of the Conversion of St Paul, apostle we promulgate officially the rules that all of us abide with as members of CLM. Our chaplain, Rev. Fr Joseph Rabbiosi was present for the circumstance. After a small prayer, he blessed us and signed the promulgation act. He was followed in this signature by the coordinator. I remind you that we are already registered as a juridical body on the last 8th Jan of this year.

I am very happy for the way God is leading us. May his love be upon us as our hope is in Him.

Justin Nougnui, coordinator.


In My Father’s House (IMFH): CLM in Ghana

Let’s now say something about the Institution, In My Father’s House (IMFH).

IMFH(Nella casa del padre mio) is an organization. IMFH’s vision, values, goals and mission have their origin, roots and inspiration in the charismatic intuition and spirituality of St Daniel Comboni (Limone, Italy, 1831-Khartum, Sudan 1881) the founder of Comboni Missionaries. Rev. Fr Joseph Rabbiosi, a Comboni priest is the founder of IMFH. Fr Joe as we call Fr Joseph was at Abor parish. He saw the need to come to the help of some needy and abandoned: orphan, sick, the neglected…The official date of beginning the house was 10th September 2000. The institution aims to help the poorest.”IMFH intervenes or even assumes the care of a child, within its framework and structures or at distance; it aims to harmonize its intervention. It tries to follow the child and to assure continuity of support and growth till the life of the child has reached the desired maturity and goal… The children are offered a holistic approach to their formation which is called –integral formation-.The children are helped to integrate and harmonize all their activities and learning whether in school in formal academic environment, or after school, in community living and interactions, into a balanced and sound personal and social life…

The maturity desired for the child is:

  1. His/her own personal goal: child’s maturity and self-reliability, including financial stability.
  2. The service to the community: s/he will have to play a meaningful role within the community and the society. The child should witness the Gospel’s Values of Truth, Justice and Love. Thus all the personnel, as well as all the children, live an ongoing process of journey of personal conversion and change in order to be and become more and more authentic witnesses of truth, justice and love.” So the house takes care of the children since they are accepted by the house. They go to school, they are cured from sickness even some serious cases that need operations. The moral and Christian formation is also given, so they may grow totally. Those who are still in the programme after the Secondary School are sent to training college so they can become professional with their salary. The house is not ‘Charity programme’. “IMFH cannot replace the parents of the children, it helps. So, the parents, the family, the extended family, the faith community, the village and its authorities, the country’s institutions, etc… they all need to assume their responsibilities and play their roles as soon as they are in position to do so”. IMFH mostly receives assistance from outside, so it is so necessary to come to an economic independence so that the target as Comboni institution should be reached: ‘Save Africa with Africans’, Africans should be able to take care of theirs and themselves.

That is what IMFH is and is expecting from all those who benefit from its programme. Our hands are widely opened to all for support. I would like to add that the Institution is not concentrated at Abor here but has its field so wide covering many other programmes like:

  1.  Sponsorship: IMFH sponsor needy persons to pursue their study or formation;
  2. Charity programme: it implies some gifts to some persons at regularly;
  3. Special school for deafs;
  4. Particular cases of disease: sometimes, operations are made…

Experts CLM in various domains are needed especially in health, in pediatric, in teaching, social welfare; in technical…The house develops some projects to sustain its economy: poultry, farming, piggery… and the school attended by outside students to generate income.

Our CLM main target here is to reach soon the autonomy which is a serious challenge, and cater for the thousands of most abandoned children at our care.

Justin Nougnui, Coordinator.