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Home WHO WE ARE Assumptionists Profiles Fr. VINCENT F. MACHOZI, A.A. (1965-2016)

Fr. VINCENT F. MACHOZI, A.A. (1965-2016)

FATHER VINCENT F. MACHOZI, A.A.

Interviewer - As an Assumptionist priest from the D.R. Congo, would you share with us some of your family background and how you came to know the Augustinians of the Assumption?

Fr. Machozi - I come from a family of thirteen children, seven of whom are still alive but several of whom died at birth. Because of this, my mother called me Machozi, which means "son of tears." My father died in 1980 when I was fifteen years old. I was encouraged by a sister to continue my education which had begun early in my life at a Baptist school. Those years were followed by two years in a public high school before I attended an Assumptionist  high school. The first Assumptionist priest I met from the U.S. was Fr. Ted Fortier, A.A. I spent the next three years guided and mentored by several religious and priests while I discerned a religious or diocesan vocation. At seventeen years of age I became an Assumptionist candidate and visited an Assumptionist community monthly.

- Where did you continue your formation, studies and move on to future assignments?

- In 1984 I was a postulant living in community and later was assigned to teach in a school run by the Oblates of the Assumption. As a professed brother I taught Religion, Chemistry and Mathematics for three years before final vows. Following theological studies in France and after being ordained in Angers, in 1994, I was assigned to Kinshasa, capital of the D.R. Congo, to teach in the seminary, be in charge of the postulants and work with youth. It is important to note that the Assumptionists have been in the Congo since 1929 and educated diocesan seminarians for fifty years before recruiting for the congregation. The effects of the war between 1990-19997 were devastating and divided the capital. Working for peace, reconciliation and advocacy for refugees  became a primary concern of the Church in Africa and certainly the Assumptionists,  After being assigned superior of the house of formation and continuing to teach in the major seminary, I was named Secretary to Religious Life for five years, '98-'03, in the Office of the Bishop. Later that same year, I came to the United States and continued the mission of advocacy on behalf of my people. I have done this primarily through a website in French which is a network of communication among the peoples of that country.

- Have you been involved in any other ministries while here in Massachusetts?

- I met a Haitian woman who was attending Mass at the Assumptionist Center in Brighton, the result of which led me to Immaculate Conception Parish in Everett, MA where I worked with that community as a French speaking priest. I was extensively involved for a time but now have cut back to one Mass a week and attend major events only. This is principally because I am now a doctoral student in theology at Boston University with one more year to go before graduation.

- What is your vision and hope for the future of your country, for the congregation and as an Assumptionist priest?

- I would like to continue teaching part time and work on social and economic issues affecting the grassroots transformation of society when I return to my country. I would also like to work in a village, training catechists and helping the poor to make a living. I want to bring the story of the Congo to the world through the continued development of the website and most importantly, I would like to see the vision of Fr. d'Alzon continue to grow by focusing on the issues of today, especially poverty. The hope of the future truly lies in the youth of today.  Please check my website at www.benilubero.com

 
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