As per St Ignatius college culture, it is mandatory that before every public exam season, the exam classes have a day set aside for retreat in order to prepare them not just for the exams but also for the life after high school. Sunday the 12th of October was to be such a day for the A’ level exam classes. The venue was Mutemwa in Mutoko. I was part of the group.

We took-off around 7am in the morning with expectations very high amongst us. Each of us had his/her own anticipations on the unique encounter with God on this blessed day.

Prior to the visit we had run a campaign at the school for food stuffs and money to carry with us as donations to the leprosy centre and the Mother of Peace Children’s home.

The students responded generously and gave some of their food stuffs from their ‘tuck’ and a bit of money which was used to buy more groceries for the Mutemwa residents. Among the food stuffs were cooking oil, mealie meal, sugar, Mazoe orange juice, salt, royco, and stationery.

We had a small challenge on our way as there was a truck that broke down and blocked traffic for about three hours.

I for one was initially taken aback by this thinking that the events of the day would be delayed and the objectives would not be met. I even feared that we would be forced to go back to the school before reaching Mutemwa. God has always a way even where there appears none, our school chaplain who was our guide quickly decided to begin the retreat there on the roadside.

Fr Padya SJ thus gave us a talk on the prayer of the Examen. He explained how this prayer or this exercise can be a good tool for discovering how God is working within our lives on a daily basis and that it makes us seek and find God in all things around us.

We were all encouraged to do this exercise on our 6 years of high school and at the same time looking into the future, the life after high school.

The road was later on cleared and so we managed to proceed with our spirits uplifted. We arrived at Mutemwa in the beginning of the afternoon and Fr Padya SJ quickly arranged a talk on the life history of John Bradburne from one Mr Robert. He gave such a life touching story of a man who had real love for God which he transferred to the lepers. Very inspiring. We then went to the leprosy centre and met the director Mrs Chigwanda and some of the people there.

The pilgrimage ended by the visit to the Mother of Peace Children’s Home, two kilometres from Mutemwa Leprosy centre.