15 October 2012

Zambia: Sata Attends Mass in Japan

PRESIDENT Michael Sata yesterday attended a mass service at Sapporo's Kita-1 Joue Roman Catholic Church on the island of Hokkaido in Japan.

Father Ken Sleyman, said Mr Sata was the first Head of State to attend mass at his congregation since it started operating 10 years ago.

In his homily Fr Sleyman said President Sata's visit to the church showed clearly that everyone needed God in life no matter their status.

"Your presence here Mr President and your Zambian delegation shows clearly that no matter who we are and what we do, we all need God in our lives, to guide us and help us to be good shepherds of the people entrusted to our care, like good Jesus did 2000 years ago.

"May God bless you as you endeavor to bring joy, peace, prosperity, and health to all the people in the beautiful country of Zambia," Fr Sleyman said.

President Sata, who also partook in the Eucharist during the mass, was accompanied by Tourism and Arts Minister Sylvia Masebo, Foreign Affairs Minister Given Lubinda, Agriculture and Livestock Minister Emmanuel Chenda, Zambia's ambassador to Japan Ng'ona Mwelwa Chibesakunda and other senior Government officials.

Fr Sleyman said the prayers of his church were with President Sata.

"Your model of showing your faith and love for God so publicly makes us very proud to be Catholic today and encourages us to be more courageous in living our Catholic faith life in Japan. God bless you individually and also may God bless Zambia. Thank you very much," he said.

And speaking in church after attending the mass, President Sata expressed happiness that the Roman Catholic Church had currently managed to penetrate Japan.

"I am happy that we have now infiltrated Japan as Catholics as most countries in Asia previously did not accept Christianity. God has answered our prayers," Mr Sata said.

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