Information reaching the executive office of the RECOWACERAO NEWS AGENCY, RECONA, indicated that Tributes from the Catholic Church have been Pouring in for Malawi’s Vice President Who Died in Plane Crash. The Correspondent of RECOWACERAO NEWS AGENCY, RECONA based in Lilongwe which is the political capital of Malawi has it that the Catholic Church in Malawi is mourning the passing of the country’s Vice President, Dr. Saulos Klaus Chilima who died in a plane crash alongside nine others on June 10, with many eulogizing the late leader as “generous and a great man who gave hope to many.”

President Lazarus Chakwera confirmed the death of the 10 on Tuesday, June 11, a day after the military aircraft that left Malawi’s capital city, Lilongwe, en route to Mzuzu airport went off the radar

At the Paulines Publications Africa (PPA) Malawi office, the late vice president who has been described as a “devout Catholic” will be remembered for his generosity.

“This is how the Vice President of Malawi supported our mission.  He always bought books for himself and for others. He would tell us to keep the change,” the Directress of Paulines Publications, Sr. Praxides Nafula said in a Facebook post. 

Sr. Nafula said she was “mourning with Paulines Malawi for this generous and devoted soul.”

“May all the departed souls in the plane crash rest in peace,” she implored.

Born in February 1973, Dr. Chilima is a Ngoni from Ntcheu District in Central Malawi. He is married to Mary and together they have two children.

The vice president was a member of the St. Patrick’s Parish of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lilongwe. Catholics in Malawi say the death of the vice president has left “tears everywhere” in the country.

“The news of the loss of the vice president and others on board has left us heartbroken,” Fr. David Niwagaba, the Managing Director of Catholic Luntha TV said.

He added, “There are tears everywhere in Malawi and in particular the Catholic Church. Malawi has lost a great man who gave hope to many and inspired many for his faith as a Catholic.”

Fr. Petros Mwale, the Parish Priest at St. Martin De Porres Parish of  Mzuzu Diocese eulogized the late vice president as  “a good man.”

“We mourn the loss of the Vice President of Malawi and the nine others who perished in a plane crash. Your prayers are requested for our nation during this difficult time,” Fr. Mwale tweeted.

He added, “The Vice President was a devout Catholic and a good man.”

Members of the Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) eulogized Dr. Chilima and former first lady, Madam Patricia Dzimbiri as “practicing and dedicated members of the Catholic Church.”

“Our hearts are torn, the nation mourns”: Malawi’s Bishops after Death of Vice President and Nine Others Confirmed.

“They came from families that were built and grounded on the Catholic faith, ethos, and values,” the Catholic Bishops in Malawi said in their June 11 statement.

On their part, members of the Africa Christian Professionals Forum (ACPF) extended their “deepest condolences to the citizens of Malawi” following the tragic incident.

They described Dr. Chilima as “a beacon of hope, a dedicated leader, who worked tirelessly for the betterment of his nation and the continent.”

“His untimely demise, alongside other key officials, is a monumental loss that will be felt deeply across all sectors of society,” the church leaders said.

On Wednesday, June 12, the government announced the official funeral for the Vice President.

Minister of Information and Digitalisation, Moses Kunkuyu Kalongashawa, announced that burial for the late Vice President is scheduled for Monday, 17th June, at Nsipe in Ntcheu.

The body of the late Dr. Chilima will be taken from the Mortuary on Friday, June 14.

It will then be taken to St. Patrick’s Catholic Parish in Area 18 for a Mass.

After Mass, the body will be transported to the Official Residence of the Vice President in Area 12. A public ceremony will be held on Sunday at Civo Stadium, after which the body will be transported to Ntcheu for burial.

Kunkuyu announced that President Chakwera has directed that the funeral of Former First Lady, Madame Shanil Dzimbiri, be conducted with full military honors.

President Chakwera has announced 21 days of national mourning for the victims of the crash.

Rev. Fr. George Nwachukwu