Take a Bow, Fr Elias Ledwaba!
By Selby Makgotho – St Peter and Paul Parish in Mokopane hosted the dual celebration of Fr Elias Ledwaba on Reconciliation Day (16 December) to celebrate the achievement of graduating with a Licentiate Degree in Canon Law from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Kenya as well as his 10th anniversary as a Priest.
Fr Ledwaba, 35, was ordained a priest in 2010 in the Polokwane Diocese. On the 16th of December this year, amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, he was celebrating his 10th-year priestly anniversary combined with a graduation ceremony in which he obtained a licentiate degree in Canon Law from the Institute of Canon Law in Kenya which is aggregated to the Faculty of Canon Law from the Pontifical University of Urbaniana in Rome. He had this to say when asked why he chose to study Canon Law in particular and not any other Church discipline:
“My interest of pursuing Canonical studies was propelled by the fact that, while I was in the seminary, there was a scarcity of canon lawyers, there was only one professor who offered canonical studies in the seminary and I wanted to add to that number. The other motivating factor was that since the establishment of the diocese, there has never been a canon lawyer in the diocese which made it difficult for matrimonial cases and other canonical related matters to be dealt with expeditiously. I am furthermore enthused by law and order.”
Fr Ledwaba is currently appointed a curate in the parish of Ss Peter and Paul in Mokopane and holds an office of judicial vicar in the diocese of Polokwane. His wish is for the people of God to acquaint themselves with operations of his office and make use of his services. He has already embarked on a journey around the diocese to conscientize people with the existence of family ministry desk and tribunal affairs already in full swing in the diocese.
He took the event to his home village of Berzicht in Ga-Maraba on Sunday, 20th December, where His Lordship, Bishop Jeremiah Masela, celebrated Holy Mass in his honour.
Bishop Masela congratulated Fr Ledwaba and encouraged him to study towards his doctorate degree.
“We are happy for your achievement because it is going to benefit the Diocese as a whole. Already, I have asked Fr Ledwaba to establish a Legal Desk in the Diocese and I am quite confident that in due course you are all going to see the results of his hard work. He worked hard while in Kenya and achieved outstanding results in this programme. This is going to translate into good results as well for our Diocese. I do not see the reason why he cannot proceed to the doctoral level,” Bishop Masela said to loud cheers.
Fr Ledwaba, in response, thanked his parents and community members for raising him up and teaching him the basics of humanity and humility.
Driving home his point, Fr Ledwaba pointed out to an old hut in his family where he grew up.
“For a long time in the family we have been debating about demolishing this hut. I have always been against the demolishing of this hut because it stands as a constant reminder of my humble beginnings. I am thankful to my parents, family, relatives and the Berzicht community for contributing to my upbringing and to where I stand today,” he said
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