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16th March 2010

Greetings from Rusape, where the climate is moving from the warm wet season to the long cold dry spell.While the temperatures were high, it was the driest year since 2001.

A report by the International Red Cross and UNICEF, on SKY TV, March 11th, painted a grim picture of food and other shortages in Zimbabwe. It is estimated that 2.8 million people are hungry and suffering from malnutrition – a high percentage of these are women and children. A third of children are orphans. The year ahead will be difficult as the maize crop has failed due to the drought. It was stated that HIV/AIDS patients need to eat well daily, otherwise the medication has a detrimental effect. The New Zealand cricket team has cancelled their visit to Harare because of an outbreak of cholera. The matches may be played elsewhere.

This message brings my best wishes for St. Patrick’s Day and Easter. I hope it finds you and yours well after the long severe winter. I keep up to date with the Irish news courtesy of the Irish Times News Digest. According to the economists, the turn around in the economy may be slow in coming.The turn around of trust in politics, banking and church leadership may be even slower. It is a painful time.

I have been unable to keep up to date with Schools’ rugby results as the Irish Times does not seem to have the same coverage as in the past.

The following is an account of my pastoral and other activities since Christmas

With love and best wishes.

Bob Kelly O.Carm.