After two years instruction Samuel was baptised on 21st April 1963 by Fr. Augustine O’Brien, MSC, at Mafenya, Sibasa Parish. At the retreat preached before his baptism, he chose the name ‘Benedict’ as he was inspired by the motto of St Benedict ‘Ora et labora’ – ‘Pray and work’.
Three months later he was confirmed by Abbot Bishop F. Clemens van Hoek, O.S.B. at Sibasa.
Benedict attended the Vendaland Training Institute from which he graduated with a Primary Teacher’s Certificate. His first appointment was to Tshilivho Primary School at Ha-Dumasi Village. During this time he studied for the Matriculation Certificate by correspondence.
Benedict continued to be involved in the Church assisting the catechists and the priest. He had a particular interest in youth, taking groups of boys and girls away for weekends where he would teach them traditional skills.