A Chicken Rearing Project for Nuns in Tanzania
"I really want to thank ACN and your generous benefactors. May Almighty God pour out His heavenly graces upon you all.” These were the words of Sister Felista, writing to Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) with gratitude for the help extended to her and her fellow nuns in Tanzania.
Sister Felista is part of the Parish of Kisa in the Diocese of Mbeya, which was established in 1927. It has close to 3,500 Catholic faithful who are ministered to by two priests, 25 catechists and five religious Sisters of the local Congregation of Our Lady Queen of Apostles.
In 2009, the parish opened a primary school, which is run by the nuns. The Sisters also give catechetical instruction, help the elderly and sick, instruct those preparing for baptism and help out in other schools in the area. At the same time they serve as sacristans in the parish church.
The parish has an additional 12 outstations which are anywhere from 10 to 30 miles away from the center of the parish, and the Sisters often have to travel considerable distances to reach them. The parish budget is minimal and the ordinary faithful live from hand to mouth, so that there is no way the parish can fund both the living costs and the travel expenses of the Sisters. The Sisters have been growing fruits and vegetables in their garden for sale locally, but this does not produce enough income to live on, and so they had an idea: set up a chicken rearing project so they can sell the eggs and also the hens for meat.
Thanks to the generosity of our benefactors, we were able to help with a contribution of $3,800 – the cost of a henhouse and 200 hens – to set them up. The project has been successful and now the Sisters are able to support themselves and no longer have to be dependent on outside help. This then enables them to more easily serve the parish and its many outstations.
Sister Felista also assured us in her letter: “Our community promises to always pray for you and all your benefactors and to have Holy Mass celebrated for your mission and your well-being."
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