Our Help is in the name of the LORD, who made Heaven and Earth
— Ps. 124:8
Br. Emmanuel James Nyengo, OSB was born on 24 November 1961 in Mara-Musoma region, at Makongoro Street from parents Lazaro Nyamwenda Nyengo and Margaret Chacha, his mother.
He was Baptized on 07 December 1961, and in 1973, received the Sacrament of Confession and Holy Communion. At the age of fourteen in 1975, he was confirmed at Musoma Parish, by his poarish priest, Reverend Chesco Masaga.
Br. Emmanuel got his primary school education between 1972 to 1978 at Mwembeni primary school and secondary education at Hanga religious seminary from 1984 to 1987. Thereafter, was sent to join Franciscan, Maua Seminary in Moshi Kilimanjaro, for advanced level education. His superiors, after having been satisfied with his secondary results, sent him to the university in Dar es Salaam to study architectural engineering until he graduated in 1997 with a diploma certificate.
In 1979, Br. Emmanuel started his monastic life as a candidate, and after three years of formation was accepted to make his first profession under prior Rev. Fr Gregory Mwageni, OSB and solemn vows under prior administrator, Rev. Fr Winfried Mlowe, in 1988. Br. Nyengo kept the stability of monastic vows until 2007 when he joyfully commemorated his 25th anniversary.
As an architect, Br. Nyengo loved his profession, and was always happy to give technical advice when consulted. The community of Katibunga – Zambia cannot forget his commitment during construction of the monastery, where he did his best in supervising the construction to its completion. Apart from other activities, designing and construction were his calibers he liked the most.
Along with all responsibilities assigned in the community, his fellow confreres voted him as a member of the seniorate and a delegate of general chapter in different terms. This showed trust by the community.
Br. Nyengo was a good monk, used to like his conferers to succeed in their assignments. He loved to talk with everyone, even during his pains and suffering, always showing a smiling face. In his lifetime, Br. Nyengo developed the spirit of patience, especially during his pains, and he could even take them as part of his repentance, hence cultivating the virtue of perseverance.
For many years, Br. Emmanuel suffered diabetes and soft tissue sarcoma in his legs, which later on developed into cancer. He struggled here and there in different hospitals searching for treatments but he couldn’t find any relief, instead the problem continued and he was becoming weaker day after day.
On 22 February 2023, on Ash Wednesday, he asked permission to go to Mbeya referral hospital, where he used to attend a clinic for therapy every month. He was allowed to go, but with advice to wait, because he looked weaker. He accepted the advice, and planned to travel on 25 February 2023. This gave him an opportunity to ask for himself the sacrament of confession and Holy Communion, thereafter, he was left alone to prepare for the journey the following day. Human ways are not God’s ways. On 25 February, Saturday, early in the morning, in a state of tranquility, our heavenly Father called him to eternal rest.
Br. Emmanuel James Nyengo, OSB died at the age of 62 years and 40 years of monastic vows.
Thank you for your prayers
Abbot Octavian and the Community
St. Maurus Abbey
1 March 2023