Catholic bishops in southern Africa deliberate on the creation of a “Missionary Commission”


With regard to priestly formation, the members of the SACBC who meet at the Mariannhill Monastery in Pinetown, South Africa, are deliberating on the possibility of “separating the academic formation from the human, spiritual and pastoral formation” of candidates for the priesthood, Fr Makgabo said.

In their discussions of formation, the Bishops of Botswana, Eswatini and South Africa focus primarily on St. John Vianney Major Seminary and Lumko Institutethe SACBC pastoral institute based in Germiston, Gauteng province, says the South African priest.

He added that the bishops are deliberating “how they envision the national seminary taking shape in the future in terms of how it will function in the future.”

“Discussions about the future of the seminary are ongoing,” the father said. Makgabo adds in his August 3 press release, “One of the future possibilities is to separate academic formation from human, spiritual and pastoral formation by offering them in different separate locations.”

The Catholic bishops are also deliberating on the boundaries of dioceses in their regional conference which the SACBC communications officer describes as “the realities of small dioceses or communities that are not economically viable; and whether it would be necessary to abolish some of the dioceses or to create new dioceses.

In the August 3 press release shared with ACI Africa, Fr. Makgabo says the Bishops of Botswana and Eswatini provided an update on the current social, economic and political situation in their respective countries.

“Bishop Ponce de Leon said that Eswatini currently has low-key violence, and opposition groups are currently silent, and so basically it is a waiting situation,” the SACBC Communications Officer reported. in its press release.

The Local Ordinary of the Diocese of Manzini, the only Catholic Episcopal see in Eswatini, has urged the people of God under his pastoral responsibility “to begin speaking out on issues that require input from the Church , for they too, together with the bishop, are the church, “Father. recalls Makgabo.

According to the South African Priest, Bishop Ponce de Leon “suggested that individuals and groups within the Church must begin to raise their voices in public squares regarding the affairs of the country.”

Two leaders of the Catholic Church in Botswana, Archbishop Frank Atese Nubuasah of the Diocese of Gaborone, and the Local Ordinary of the Diocese of Francistown, Bishop Anthony Pascal Rebello provided updates on the political situation and immigration challenges in the country.


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