Donatien Nyembo SJ and Marcel Ariston Blé – Vatican City
Ivorian priests are taking part in an Extraordinary Congress from 7 to 11 July 2021. According to Bishop Gaspard Béby Gnéba of the Diocese of Man, in Côte d’Ivoire, the objective is to deepen reflection on the life and ministry of priests in the country. The priests have been spending time sharing their spiritual, pastoral, material and missionary experiences in line with the chosen theme: “Life and ministry of a priest in Côte d’Ivoire: The priest in Côte d’Ivoire in the face of challenges.”
Making Pope Francis’ pastoral vision our own
President of the Organising Committee (PCO), spoke about making the pastoral, missionary and ecclesiological vision of Pope Francis their own. The vision of Pope Francis aligns very well with the five-year pastoral plan, currently running (2018 to 2023) in Côte d’Ivoire.
Building a united and reconciled nation
Notwithstanding the challenges that priests face as they try to grow Christian communities under their charge, Ivorian clergy have pledged to walk together as one body. The goal is to build a new Ivorian society that is united, reconciled and one marked by love, universal fraternity and peace.
Delegates drawn from 15 dioceses
The congress has drawn over 300 participants, comprising delegates from the country’s 15 dioceses and fifty guests, all gathered for the four-day event in Côte d’Ivoire’s political capital of Yamoussoukro.
The solemn opening mass of the Extraordinary Congress was presided over by Archbishop Paolo Borgia, the Apostolic Nuncio in Côte d’Ivoire at the Cathedral of Saint Augustine in Yamoussoukro. Cardinal Jean-Pierre Kutwa will preside over the closing ceremonies on Sunday 11 July at the Basilica of Our Lady of Peace of Yamoussoukro