December 2015 - ROMAN CATHOLIC ARCHDIOCESE OF BAMENDA, CAMEROON

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December 2015

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15TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PROVINCIAL PASTORAL PLAN 16-19 Dec 2015


There were over 200 delegates brought into Sacred Heart College Mankon from all the 4 dioceses of the Bamenda Ecclesiastical Province (BEP), to celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the Provinicial Pastoral Plan (PPP).  Drawn up in 1995 at the inspiration of the First African Synod and the recommendations of the Post Synodal Exhortation, Ecclesia in Africa, the Provincial Pastoral Plan, articulates the strategic pastoral approaches to evangelization in the BEP. This Pastoral template believes that the Church and true evangelization begins with the convictions of the individual Christians who is ready to deepen his faith and encounter Jesus Christ personally. Then such a Christian can share with others with whom he lives in the neighbourhood; and here is born the idea of a SCC – the Church in the neighbourhood. It is here that different Christian families can easily share their faith and feel concerned for each other, meeting for Gospel sharing, praying and performing corporal and spiritual works of mercy. It is imperative that Christians group themselves into several SCCs which then make up a Mission Station. At each step, the talents and gifts of each person are of capital importance, hence the need to identify, group together and utilize different talents. This is the understanding behind  the concept and reality of Commissions in the PPP. There is no one without a talent, so each must fit into one of the Commissions. So far there there are 19 Commissions that have been identified and suggested by the PPP for the BEP. These include Commissions for Liturgy, Catechetics, Social Welfare, Education, Justice and Peace, Youth, Communications, Men's Affairs, Women's Affairs, Inculturation, Prayer and Action Groups  and so on. A committed Christian is expected in each SCC or Mission Station to belong to one of these commissions according to his giftedness and interests. Elections of leaders take place from the SCCs, through the MS, to the Parochial, Deanery and Diocesan levels.  In this way, the Church represents the entire sensitivities of all the People of God; a true Christian Family. This was the ideal of what the PPP conceived 15 years ago and reason for which there was need for an evaluation in order to get the way forward; and this was the justification for the ceremonies and symposium in SHC Mankon from Wednesday 16-Saturday 19 December 2015. The celebrations began with  the solemn enthronement of the Bible on Wednesday 16 December in the college chapel. The ceremony was carried out by Fr Joseph Ateh of the Archdiocese of Bamenda assisted by Frs Anthony Bangsi from the Bamenda Pastoral Formation Team and Samuel Tabeson from Mamfe (insert a bit from Fr Ateh). On Thursday 17 December, Bishop George Nkuo, bishop of Kumbo presided at the opening Mass (insert a bit) and two talks were given by a team from Kumbo on the theme of the Congress: “New Wine in New Wineskin”. Fr Romanus Kisi presented the original desire of the Pastoral plan (insert a little) while Fr Cyprian Tatah brought out the challenges and shortcomings of the PPP (insert a little). Discussions followed. Later on another talk on the Value of the SCCs was presented by a team from the Archdiocese of Bamenda- Fr Anthony Bangsi, Sr Colette McCann, and Mme Geraldine Kesiki (insert). Workshops followed and suggestions made at general assembly.  On Friday 18 December, Holy Mass began the day, and a third talk of the Congress was on A New Look at the Commissions and Pastoral Councils by Br Boniface Nkafu, Miss Susan Awa and Mr Chemo Godlove. Workshops and plenary assembly followed the presentation. In the evening of this day, there was a presentation and adoption of the final statement.  The celebrations and evaluation exercise of the PPP came to an end on Saturday morning with the closing mass with Archbishop Cornelius Fontem Esua as main celebrant and Bishop Andrew Fuanya Nkea delivering the homily. The day and occasion ended with awards, recommendations and participants left SHC satisfied and more determined to implement the PPP in all SCCs, MS, Parishes, Deaneries and Dioceses


OFFICIAL OPENING OF HOLY DOOR OF ST JOSEPH'S CATHEDRAL MANKON  WEDNESDAY 16 DECEMBER 2015


The ceremonies bagan with the assembly of the population at 8.30 at the Centenary Piazza. The Archbishop, His Grace Cornelius Fontem Esua led the ceremony and also the Mass.

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