Skip to content

Cardinal Ouedraogo elected president of African bishops' conference

Free World Class Education
FREE Catholic Classes

7/29/2019 (1 month ago)
Catholic Online (

During the plenary assembly celebrating its golden jubilee, the leadership organization for bishops' conferences in Africa elected Cardinal Philippe Ouedraogo of Ouagadougou as its president.


Catholic Online (
7/29/2019 (1 month ago)

Published in Africa

Kampala, Uganda, (CNA) - The July 19-29 plenary assembly of the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar was held in Kampala and was devoted to the theme "That they may know Christ and have life in abundance."

In its closing message, given July 28, SECAM called its golden jubilee "a time of thanksgiving" and of communion.

[media id="27465"]

The symposium said the jubilee is "a commitment to the service of reconciliation, justice and peace which promotes communion and pastoral solidarity which enables us to stand together against: ideological colonization, land grabbing, political and democratic destabilization, human trafficking, terrorism and arms trafficking, etc."

The bishops added that SECAM is to be "a sign of hope, especially for families and our countries."

They noted that "the family founded on the union of man and woman remains the first place of evangelization; that is why SECAM has kept insisting on its importance, vocation and nature as ordained by God."

They highlighted the importance of integral human development, and "the socio-political dimensions of evangelization and calls on politicians and governments to work for the wellbeing of their people."

The Ugandan martyrs, the bishops said, "remind us of the importance of remaining faithful to our faith in Christ and to our baptismal commitment. They are also models for all the baptized, especially the catechists."

SECAM also noted that children "need to be given special attention and quality Christian education to make them effective witnesses to Christ."

They drew attention to the "irreplaceable role" of women in the Church and society, saying, "their participation in education and evangelization is indispensable."

At the plenary assembly, the members of SECAM also made a number of commitments and exhortations.

They committed to investing " more deeply in the biblical, theological, moral and spiritual formation of all the baptized; to nourish them with the word of God and the sacraments, so that they may make the gospel penetrate all aspects of life," and to making the jubilee "a springboard for the new evangelization."

The bishops also committed themselves to promoting " the human formation and the professional, moral and spiritual education of children and the youth and to help them to be more deeply rooted in the values of the gospel," as well as deepening collaboration with political leaders and holding them accountable, " so as to put our human and natural resources at the service of development, reconciliation, justice and peace."

They exhorted religious communities to be true to their vocation and to engage in "missionary exchange" among dioceses, and recommended that "the formation of priests should aim at helping them to develop a deeper personal intimate relationship with Christ, human and spiritual maturity, a sense of service and accountability and passion for the mission of the church."

"We encourage the particular Churches to engage in the formation, accompaniment and guidance of civil servants and politicians in their respective locations so as to fight against corruption, promote good governance and better management of human and natural resources," the bishops added.

SECAM elected Bishop Sithembele Sipuka of Umtata (Mthatha) as its first vice president, and Bishop Lucio Muandula of Xai-Xai its second vice president. Fr. Terwase Henry Akaabiam was appointed secretary general.

The symposium grew out of the desires of the African bishops at the Second Vatican Council to speak with one voice. SECAM's stated mission, according to its website, is to "to promote its role as a sign and instrument of salvation and to build the Church as a Family of God in Africa," while also preserving and fostering communion and collaboration among its member episcopal conferences.

Cardinal Ouedraogo announced at the assembly that SECAM will be issuing a "Kampala Document" after the assembly, to "help the people of God to deepen their knowledge of Christ our Savior and make him known as the Way, the Truth and the Life."

The symposium intends the document to "become a reference text for our mission."


More Africa

Violence, displacement on the rise in Sahel region of Africa Watch

Image of Little girl in Africa

Catholic Relief Services is warning of increasing violence and displacement in the Sahel - the vast area of western and north-central ... continue reading

Bishops across Africa condemn 'xenophobic' attacks in South Africa Watch

Image of South Africa

A wave of deadly attacks targeting African foreign nationals in South Africa has caught the attention of national and regional Church ... continue reading

Pope Francis says he hopes 'seeds of peace' will bear fruit in Africa Watch

Image of Pope Francis in Africa

Vatican City, (CNA) - Upon his return to the Vatican after a six-day trip to Africa, Pope Francis said Wednesday that he hopes the "seeds ... continue reading

Pray for your enemies, Pope Francis tells Mozambican Catholics Watch

Image of Pope Francis with Mozambican Catholics

Jesus calls his followers to a high standard - to forgive their enemies, to pray for those who have hurt them, and to seek reconciliation, ... continue reading

Pope encourages Madagascar's civil leaders to work for 'integral development' Watch

Image of Antananarivo, Madagascar

In an address to the civil authorities of Madagascar Sept. 7, Pope Francis urged the leaders to embrace the "soul" of their country and to ... continue reading

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

Learn about Catholic world

Catholic Online
Inform - Inspire - Ignite

Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained

Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need

Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online

Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye

Daily Reading
Today's bible reading

Lent / Easter
Death & resurrection of Jesus

Advent / Christmas
Birth of Jesus

Rest of Catholic Online
All Catholic world we offer

Products and services we offer

Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books

Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on

Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel

Learn the Catholic way

Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all

Student Classes
K-12 & Adult Education Classes

Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education

Connect with us online

Catholic Online on Facebook
Catholic social network

Catholic Online on Twitter
Catholic Tweets

Catholic Online on YouTube
Enjoy our videos

Catholic Online on Instagram
Shared Catholic moments

Catholic Online on Pinterest
Catholic ideas style inspiration

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.

Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.