By Eric Tataw – Wednesday October 23, 2019.
The visit of this Central African Bishop, precisely from Cameroon to the United States of America was legendary. Usually, the visit of a Bishop to his congregants overseas, is always stunningly beautiful, extremely valuable, most often entertained by choirs with great panache.
Above all, it presents a unique opportunity for Christians and priests from the home country from where the Bishop is domiciled to invest in the exchange of prayers and pleasantries as well. The case of Bishop Immanuel Bushu of the Diocese of Buea, a town and capital city of Cameroon’s South West region wasn’t different.
National Telegraph gathered that Bishop Immanuel Bushu arrived the United States on Tuesday October 1, 2019, for a pastoral visit to Arlington Diocese, in the Southeastern U.S. state of Virginia. The high point of his visit was the celebration of a Pontifical Holy Mass for the Cameroon Catholic Community of Virginia with Mgr Bushu presiding at the Holy Mass with thirteen (13) Cameroonian and one (1) Nigerian priests concelebrating at the mass.
Reports say the priests came from Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, Ohio, Georgia and Washington DC. This mass that took place on Sunday October 6, 2019, beginning at about 2:30pm, was celebrated at the Sacred Heart Chapel of Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church in Vienna, Virginia, a source told National Telegraph, adding that reception followed at the Parish Hall.
This Cameroon Catholic Community dedicated to St Therese of Lisieux was celebrating its Feast Day and Community Thanksgiving, said a Christian who attended the Mass, detailing that the Cameroon Catholic Community is under the office of Multicultural Ministries of the Diocese of Arlington with Bridget Wilson serving as the Diocesan Director.
She would later alongside the Chairperson for the Cameroon Community in Virginia, Marie Therese Mbinkar, welcome Bishop Bushu, thank him for celebrating mass with them. The Office of Multicultural Ministry in Arlington diocese seeks to serve all ethnic communities located in the Diocese of Arlington and to serve as a resource to newcomers. It serves many communities like; African and African America, Asian and Pacific Island, European, Native American, South American, Migrants and hearing impaired communities.
The Bishop also made stops at various areas to greet some priests from his diocese who are studying and serving in the United States and encouraged them in their pastoral ministries while reminding them to pray for the community back home which is going through very hard times, the Bishop said referring to an armed conflict in Cameroon’s two English-speaking regions.
Among those visited are; Charlotte Diocese of North Carolina and Arlington Diocese, Virginia. He also paid a visit to Fr John Barry, Pastor of the Church of the Resurrection at Burtonsville, Maryland, to thank him in a special way for the care he and the community gave to his priest, Late Fr. Clement Atia who during the last days of his life was under the care of many people of goodwill, chief among them, Fr Barry and his community.
The Bishop also visited Bishop Roy Edward Campbell, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Washington DC. Bishop Bushu has been a very close friend to Fr. Roy Edward Campbell Jr. at the time he was Pastor of St Joseph Catholic Church at Largo Maryland.
This close friendship is still maintained after Fr Campbell was named Auxiliary Bishop of Washington Archdiocese. Bishop Bushu met with his friend and asked him to pray for his diocese and peace in his country, Cameroon, trapped in a civil war.
On Thursday October 10, 2019, Bishop Bushu was received in the United States Federal capital of Washington DC by Mgr. Wilton Daniel Gregory, an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church who is the Archbishop of Washington.
The men of God held talks on many challenging issues, including the situation in Cameroon. A source in Washington DC told National Telegraph that, among the many things discussed, the Bishop of Buea told the Bishop of Washington that there’s an armed conflict currently going on in the North West and South West of Cameroon.
Bishop Bushu is also said to have discussed the humanitarian situation as a result of the war, the actions of the warring parties, before calling on Mgr. Wilton Daniel Gregory to pray for justice and peace in Cameroon.
During the Mass animated by the Our Lady of Lourdes (LESAN) choir, Christians used the occasion to celebrate the 75th Birthday Anniversary of the Chief Shepherd of Buea Diocese Mgr Immanuel Bushu. The Bishop wrapped up his visit with a meeting with Bishop Michael Burbidge, Bishop of Arlington Diocese Virginia on Saturday October 12, 2019 and returned late same day to his home Diocese.