The Name of the Parish: St. Anthony Cathedral
Address: P.O. Box 84, Tanga, Tanzania
Parish Patron: St. Anthony of Padua
Priest In-Charge (Pastor): Rev. Fr. Paul Semng’indo
Assisting Priest(s): Fr. Denis Mavunga, Fr. James Kabosa, Fr. Paul Shirima
Religious Sisters: Congregation of Our Lady of Usambara (COLU)
Sundays: 7:30A, 9:30A, 4:30P (Children) at St. Anthony
6:30A, 8:00A & 4P (Children) at Majani Mapana
Weekdays: 6:00A at St. Anthony and at Majani Mapana
7.30PM on Saturdays (English at St. Anthony)
Chumbageni, Kisosora, Majani Mapana
- St. Karoli Lwanga, Majani Mapana, P.O. Box 84, Tanga, Tanzania
- Radio Huruma, P.O. Box 1108, Tanga, Tanzania. Phone: +255-272645999 Fax: +255272643548 E-mail: email@example.com
- St. Anthony’s Hostel, P.O. Box 84, Tanga, Tanzania. Phone: +255-272642942
- Tumaini Health Center, P.O. Box 84, Tanga, Tanzania. Phone: +255-272643807
PARISH PHOTO GALARY:
St. Anthony of Padua: the patron of our parish, pray for us!
St. Anthony’s Cathedral Parish complex is located in Chumbageni area in the city of Tanga along Tanga-Mombasa highway. It also borders the beauty of Indian Ocean on its East. The parish complex is also connected with the diocesan chancery offices and it also borders the complex of the Tanga Port.
b). First Parish in the Diocese
i). Holy Ghost Fathers:
i). Its geography:From its inception as the parish, St. Anthony Parish covered very large territory in the eastern territory of Tanga Region. For a long time it was the only parish in the whole of the coastal strip of Tanga from the boarder with Kenya (the diocese of Mombasa) in its north all the way to the south of Pangani where it bordered with the Diocese of Morogoro. To the west it stretched itself as far as Ngomeni areas where it bordered with Mlingano Parish. It also stretched itself all the way beyond Maramba and Daluni areas. ii). Many outstations:Priests from St. Anthony would travel in all this territory to provide pastoral services in many outstations. Many of the outstations were within the sisal estate camps where the plantation managements had built small churches to provide their employees with places for worship. The priests from St. Anthony would visit the remote areas and stay there for some days to provides various religious services to the people. iii). Liturgical services in outstations:Liturgical services in these places would start with the celebration of the sacrament of reconciliation, then the celebration of the holy mass to be followed by baptism, religious instructions, other sacraments, or the blessings of homes and graves.
iv). Ministry of catechists: The local catechists in these outstations were very instrumental to preserving and guiding Catholic faith since priests were few and their visits to those areas were rare. d). Parish Church Building
i). Original church building:The original parish church building at St. Anthony was very small. This church reflected the size of Tanga at that time. It was a very small town with fewer people whose big percentage was Moslem. ii). Increasing of population:As the days passed by, the Tanga town grew up and its population slowly increased. From the year 1948 Tanga became a port town. The port was famous in exporting of sisal and tea from this region and also importing a number of things from overseas such as machines, automobiles and the like for the use in the plantations. The high volume of business in this port and the existing of many sisal and tea plantations in the region contributed to the increasing of population in this area. In 1952 Tanga town had 4,635 Africans, 1,029 Arabs, 5,779 Asians and 558 Europeans. iii). Cathedral Church:When Tanga became a diocese of its own in 1958, the there was a need of building a Cathedral Church. At the beginning the headquarters of the diocese were thought to be in Lushoto. Initial efforts were done to build the church of the Cathedral status in Lushoto. This plan was reversed when the headquarters of the Diocese was advised to be in Tanga Township to reflect the the governmental headquarters of Tanga Region. With this move, the efforts to establish Lushoto as the Bishop’s See were reversed and from then, plans were put together to build the Cathedral Church in Chumbageni Tanga.
In 1966 the Cathedral Church begun to be built in Chumbageni under the leadership of Fr. O’Kane, I.C. who was both a priest in-charge of St. Anthony Parish as well as the diocesan Vicar General. Brother Fortunatus, OSB of Sakharani Benedictine Farm and Brother Jim Marriot, I.C helped Fr. O’Kane. The shape of this church was in a circle and it continues to stand up to these days. Its beauty is just outstanding.e). The Expansion of Tanga Township
i). Pastoral challenge:The history of St. Anthony Cathedral Parish has the big footprints of Rev.Fr. Gerard Smith, I.C. who became the priest in-charge for St. Anthony Cathedral Parish for a period of around 20 years since mid-seventies. During that time he was also the Vicar General for the diocese as well as the Diocesan Treasurer General. During his term of leadership at St. Anthony Cathedral Parish Fr. Gerard Smith witnessed the growth of Tanga Township and its suburban areas. This growth challenged the parish in its pastoral infrastructure to reflect this physical growth. St. Anthony Cathedral church could no more contain all these people who were coming in for Sunday liturgies and people had to walk long distances to the parish. ii). Outstations in the township:Fr. Smith saw the need of getting more plots of land in other parts of the town municipal to build up bigger outstation churches so that people in those areas could receive pastoral services in their neighborhoods. He got a number of plots of land and he built St. Charles Lwanga Church in Majani Mapana area; St. Joseph Kagwa Church in Amboni; St. Mathias Mulumba Church in Usagara and then St. Peter-Saruji Church outside the town of Pongwe. Fr. Smith didn’t only build church buildings in those outstations, but he also build houses for priests, sisters, and kindergarten schools for the education of young children. d). Other Parish/Diocesan ProjectsWhile at St. Anthony Parish, Fr. Smith built a Hostel for girls who were doing their educational programs in educational institutions within the municipal of Tanga. The hostel became a sanctuary for many girls whose families had to be transferred from Tanga to other parts of the country because of their employments. In that conditions, these girls would remain live at St. Anthony’s Hostel finishing their studies. Fr. Smith also was instrumental to the building of the large warehouse to help with procuring diocesan and nearby dioceses whose shipments arrived in through the Port of Tanga. e). Rev. Gerard Smith Leaving the Parish In 1985 Fr. Smith left St. Anthony Cathedral Parish for St. Peter-Saruji outstation outside in Pongwe. At that time, Rev. Rev. Fr. Martin Maganga,, a diocesan priest, was sent by the bishop to be the first native priest to be a priest in-charge of St. Anthony Cathedral Parish. While in Pongwe Fr. Smith continued with his diocesan level assignments as the Vicar General as well as Diocesan Treasurer General positions, the positions he held until the time when Bishop Maurus Komba retired as the bishop of Tanga. f). The native priests from St. Anthony Cathedral Parish Zachary Kayanza (1975) and James Kweka (1975) (R.I.P), and Samuel Itatiro (1976) (R.I.P.).