The Church on the road towards love of Christ

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The Church of St. Eugene de Mazenod in Tsarahonenana, Toamasina is the second church titled after the founder of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate on Madagascar. It is situated in the diocese of Toamasina near the city, and not far from a nickel and cobalt factory named Ambatova.

THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH : This church was built in 2006. It was organized by Father Mariusz Kasperski omi, then pastor of St. John the Baptist church in Analakininina. It arose from the neighbourhood of St. Paul, belonging to this parish. At the outset there were only 52 Christians who prayed there.

05 terraine 0105 terraine 02The first Mass was celebrated there on March 29, 2009 in the elementary school. Most of the people who live there are drivers of Malagasy rickshaws, built on bike frames. Many people raise chickens and others hire themselves out for seasonal work in construction.

In November of 2009, a resident of the area offered land to build the church. This was a gift that began the building of and the life of the church.

 

 

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Il s’en est suivi après des élections des chefs de quartiers au mois de Mars 2010. A l’époque, il n’y avait que deux quartiers : Sainte Faustine et Saint Benoît.

The first Mass celebrated in the wooden church of St. Eugene de Mazenod was on December 25th, 2009.  The congregation that day numbered 108 Christians.

00 MarcoIn March of 2010, elections took place for the parish committee. Two districts were formed - St. Faustyna and St. Benedict.

The first time that the sacrament of baptism was conferred on Easter Sunday in 2010, there were 24 children baptized. Father Alfred Rakotomalala OMI administered the sacrament.

On Saturday May 21, 2011, Bishop Desire Tsarahazana, archbishop of Toamasina, visited St. Eugene parish on the invitation of Father Mariusz.

On March 22, 2014, Archbishop Desire Tsarahazana made his second visit in the company of Father Jean Merci and Father  Marco on the occasion of World Youth Day.

On the 24th of April 2016, the superior of the delegation of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate named Father Jean Marco Lucky RATELOLAHY as the first pastor of the church.

Par ailleurs, comme le nombre des fidèles ne cessaient de s’accroître, l’idée d’extension de l’église a été élaborée, d’où son état actuel de 16mx20m.

Currently, the parish is made up of 3 territories: St. Faustina, St. Benedict, and ST. John Paul II.

THE TERRITORIAL CHARACTER OF ST. EUGENE DE MAZENOD PARISH

The territory of this parish is huge, and continues to grow. This happens due to exodus from the city: people from downtown no longer have the space to build homes, and seek land on the outskirts of the city. There is great hope that the number of parishioners will continue to increase.

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The boundaries of the territories of St. Eugene de Mazenod Parish :

  • EAST : Pangalana Canal (beside the parish of St. John the Baptist)
  • NORTH : GS Company
  • WEST : Tamatave II School, beside Tanandava (the road to Barikadimy)
  • SOUTH : the nickel and cobalt factory in AMBATOVY

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The parish is grown thanks to the efforts of Christians and benefactors: The Oblates on Madagascar, and especially thanks to the financial support from the General Administration in Rome, the French-Benelux Delegation, and the Mission Procure in Poland. Our benefactors helped us to realize the construction of the church, the pews for the faithful, the completion of classrooms, and the purchase of land to expand the area around the church and to construct a rectory.

We thank also the Oblate and lay benefactors, Ad Gentes in Poland for support in the development of the church and the formation of the new parish.

The first church was consecrated on November 18, 2009. The number of Christians kept growing, thus the idea to expand the church to its present size: 16 x 20 m. 1800 faithful attend Masses on Sundays. From March 2016, there is daily Mass except for Mondays, a day of rest for the priests.
Since the church’s opening, we have baptised 700 people, 400 people received First Communion, 170 people were confirmed, and 52 couples were married. Presently, 450 students take classes in catechism. There are 12 different classes.

The blessing of the church and the infrastructure around it took place on November 26, 2017. The Mass was presided by Bp. Desire Tsarahazana, archbishop of the diocese of Toamasina.

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In the name of all of the faithful at St. Eugene de Mazenod church, we thank you.

May Almighty God bless you !

WEEKLY MASS PROGRAM

At the beginning of March, there was a change to the schedule of Masses. The priest in charge of the parish works full-time, except for his day off, Mondays. From Tuesday to Friday, Mass is celebrated at 6 in the morning, and 6:30 on Saturdays.

Mass for youth is celebrated every Wednesday at 4:30 in the afternoon. Many youth play an active role in the liturgy, especially in sharing the Gospel. On Sundays, there are 2 Masses, one at 6:30 in the morning for the adults, and at 8:30 in the morning for the kids.

1800 Christians pray in the church, and 450 children and youth participate in catechism classes on Saturday afternoons. Every Sunday we have catechesis, deepening the faith for all Christians, 30 minutes before Mass.

We hope that soon the church will become the new parish of Toamasina, under the care of the Oblates. The future of our church, the creation of the parish, we entrust to Mary Immaculate and St. Eugene de Mazenod, the founder of our congregation.

Father Ratelolahy Marco