Pastor’s Corner for the Fourth Sunday of Easter, Year B, by Fr. Bruce Botha SJ

Farewell to Fr. Lwazi


As you will have heard by now, we will be saying farewell to Fr Lwazi at the end of April. He came to us 9 months ago as a seminarian, was ordained a deacon and then, 4 months ago, a priest. I have enjoyed his presence and valued his contribution to the parish community.


As a seminarian and deacon, he was especially helpful in our ministry to the homeless. He helped to draw up the weekly guided reflection material which the “Come Home” bible study uses, and he was a regular facilitator. On Monday evenings he was a very effective queue marshal, ensuring discipline in the line, and that no one jumped the queue or got more toiletry items than they were allowed.


As a newly ordained priest he has taken seriously the obligation to do liturgy well. He has practiced with the director of music so that he can sing the presidential prayers, as well as lead us in morning prayer. This has enabled me to see our liturgy with fresh eyes and to sharpen some of the things that habit had blunted. In a certain sense I have had to “relearn” our liturgy as I have been answering his deep questions about what we do, and why we do it like that.


He has also been a reminder to us that there is a church, and priests, out there who are not Jesuit and have a very different spirituality to that of us Jesuits. Through knowing him I have met a wonderful array of priests and seminarians, and for that I am grateful.


His new parish in Westonaria is a very different parish to our own. It is small, with very little demographic diversity, and with no schools, universities, or hospitals in its boundaries. It also is struggling financially. So not only is it very different, but it is also going to very challenging for him.


Despite these challenges which await him, I am confident in his ability to not only survive but thrive. He has years of experience as a Lutheran minister, and the learning that he has made here at Holy Trinity. He is well equipped to revitalise his new parish and help it grow. On behalf of the parish community of Holy Trinity, I wish him every blessing that he needs, and assure of him of our prayers. He will always have a home here in our hearts.