African Catholics Without a Church

 

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Photo by Avel Chuklanov 

After the outbreak of the health crisis due to COVID-19, drastic measures have been taken by the governments of many African countries, with the closure of structures and isolation; on the other hand, the African Bishops' Conferences have ordered the closure of the churches and the suspension of the sacraments.

 

In Africa many Catholic Christians are still unable to find themselves in this new reality and especially in this dynamic of spiritual communion: "It is a new difficult journey to live! This virus, an 'intrusion', in the world of Catholic Christians who have to face their new reality, is still difficult to adapt to", explains Fr. Donald Zagore, Ivorian theologian of the Society for African Missions.


"There are those who try to build a domestic church, organizing family prayer with their own means; those who suffer because they cannot pray within the family, too accustomed and too attached to the pastoral services offered by the Church", highlights Zagore. "It is really difficult today for the African faithful to conceive a faith without a church, without sacraments and above all without priests. If so far they have been guided by well-established structures such as the Church, the hierarchy, the sacraments, today they must find a way to stand on their own feet. This emergency also represents an opportunity for growth for our Christians and for greater responsibility for their faith. I am sure that the African Church will become stronger with stronger Catholic Christians", concludes the missionary.

 

(DZ/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 31/3/2020)