Monthly Archives: January 2016

Africa 2016. A challenging year ahead

2016 promises to be a challenging year for Africa, with several elections in a tense climate, the aggravation of the crisis in Burundi and the opening of the Gbagbo trial in front of the International Criminal Court (ICC).  One of the main questions is whether the situation will improve or further deteriorate in Burundi, where…

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Book Review – An unlikely country

According to a decades-old (but false) saying “aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly, but it doesn’t know it, so it goes flying”. It’s a line that comes to the mind many times while reading “Nigeria. A new history of a turbulent century”, by Richard Bourne, a senior research fellow at the UK’s Institute…

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A young but vital Church

The Church in Chad has a much shorter history than any other in Africa. It was only in 1928 that the first Catholic priest, Fr. René Calloc’h of the Holy Ghost Fathers (Spiritans) set foot in today’s Sarh, then named Fort Archambault. The first mission was established one year later in Kou, near Moundou, by…

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Ghana. Ancestor veneration

The world vision of the Ashanti community is reflected in the ancestral worship ceremonies which are performed to ask the deceased for protection and in those ceremonies held to pay tribute to the king. Events to reaffirm individuals’ membership to the group. The Adae Kese festival. The Ashanti tribe, the largest in Ghana, are people…

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Who profits from Kenya’s war in Somalia?

It has been more than four years since the Kenyan Defence Force (KDF) crossed the border into Somalia, and Kenyans are entitled to ask what exactly their troops are still doing there. The official rationale is no longer entirely convincing. The original purpose of the military intervention was to insulate the country from the conflict…

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Algeria. The Cathedral in the desert

The Church of Sahara, a small Christian community in the immensity of the Algerian desert, where faith is nourished by simplicity and dialogue with Islam. We spoke with Mons.  Claude Rault, Bishop of Laghouat – Ghardaïa. He often  depicts his small church located in the immensity of the Sahara desert as a small caravan. Mons.…

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Colombia. A young church among water, forest, war and coca.

The Apostolic Vicariate of Puerto Leguízamo–Solano was established only two years ago. Msgr. Joaquín Humberto Pinzόn sent us some notes. The Vicariate covers an immense territory of 64,912 square km inhabited by 56 thousand people,  almost all Catholics. It is located in the south of Colombia on the border with Peru and Ecuador, and is…

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Global justice is urgently needed.

The Christmas story celebrates the coming of Jesus of Nazareth who gave dignity to the world especially to women and children. Jesus and his parents were migrants fleeing the massacres of King Herod. If Egypt had closed its borders, the holy family might have been killed. Compensation and justice for the poor has been agreed…

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Economy to dominate 2016 Zambian elections

Zambians are going to vote in the tripartite elections in September 2016 but already the economy is dominating all other issues. With the loss of jobs in the copper mines as a result of low prices on the world market many voters in the country are worried if the present government of Edgar Lungu would…

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Growing ambitions

In early February 2008, Déby’s regime’s days seemed numbered: rebels from three different groups joined forces and reached N’Djamena. Their heavily armed men on pickups battled with government troops at a short distance from the presidential palace, and it was only thanks to the support of the French mission Epérvier that the attack was eventually…

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South Sudan. Living with poor people

The country  has been in the throes of a civil war. Prices have been soaring and more people go hungry. Missionaries do not work miracles but they extend a helping hand to the poor people. A reflection of a missionary in the field. In Juba, the capital of South Sudan, we live behind a small…

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Chad. A country of contrasts

The 19th of October does not mark any particular anniversary or festivity in Chad, and neither will it in the future. However, this date took on a symbolic meaning, last year when two men representing the past, the present and possibly the future of the country ideally, met each other in a Dakar court.  …

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Money as a mission.

St. Basil the Great, in the 4th century would call money ‘the devil’s dung,’  an epithet reused by Pope Francis last year. Oscar Wilde said…

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The Hare, the Hippo and the Fire.

The hare and the hippo were great friends. They walked together in the veld and visited each other in their homes. The hippo was very proud…

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Youth & Mission

The Virus of Racism.

The world is seeing once again the upsurge of a vicious “virus” that has spread to every corner of the world. This time, the “virus” is…

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