By Quegas Mutale in Binga
The Catholic diocese of Hwange held the first deanery music competition at All Souls Mission in Binga on 15 July 2023. The competition was made as part of celebrating the Catholic sacred music dedicated to St Cecilia. Deaneries in Hwange diocese are Binga, Dete, Hwange urban, Lupane and Victoria falls.
Bishop Raphael Ncube indicated that music is part and parcel of the liturgy when people meet with the Lord.
“There are so many ministries in the church and the outstanding one is that of music, Bishop Raphael Ncube of Hwange said in his homily. He advised people to follow the example of St. Cecilia who praised the Lord through music. Bishop Ncube said that singing can be used to express joy, praise, gratitude or sorrow. He said singing is part and parcel of Christian life and should be to express one’s relationship with God.
“Our lives must be special praises to God. When we sing today, this is not about competing, but to praise our God”, he said.
Fr. Simelinkosi Masango, the Spiritual Director of sacred music composers in Hwange Diocese encouraged deaneries to involve school children in their choirs so as to enrich their singing. He requested priests and religious to support and be part of the choir in their deaneries. Hwange diocese appointed a new diocesan music executive committee for the first time during sacred music celebrations. Fr. Masango shared that there was no diocesan committee all along and much of the preparations were done by Binga deanery leadership.
After the music competition, Fr. Masango announced the new diocesan music executive before Bishop Ncube commissioned and blessed them. The members are Mr. Richard Dulama of Binga as chairperson, and Mr. Gift Ndebele of Lupane as his vice. Mrs. Angela Ncube of Hwange deanery was appointed as the recording secretary, whose vice is Ms. Motshiwe Chuma of Dete. Mr. Lucky Ndlovu of Victoria falls is the treasurer, with Mr. Innocent Phiri of Lupane as the organizing secretary. Mrs. Tariro Madzivanyika of Hwange is the financial secretary. Committee members are Mr. John Ngoshe of Hwange, Mrs. Silindeni Moyo of Lupane, Ms. Sifelani Phiri of Dete and Mrs. Veresie Munsaka of Binga.
Bishop Ncube told the new executives committee to unite the people of God through music, support them, and not leave them alone. He encouraged them to strengthen choirs in the deaneries. Choir positions were categorized into two.
One was for the set piece, a Tonga song, Twayima kunembo lyako translating ‘we stand before you’, composed by Magadelen Munsaka. The other one was the own choice song. In the set piece category, Binga deanery scooped the first ranking, with Victoria falls coming second. Hwange urban, Dete and Lupane deaneries got third, fourth and fifth positions respectively in both the set piece and own song categories. As for own choice song, Victoria Falls came first and Binga second.