AFRICA/IVORY COAST - Inculturation and evangelization, priorities for future priests

Saturday, 29 January 2022 culture   faith  

Abidjan (Agenzia Fides) - "When a priest is rooted in culture, he finds an adequate language for proclaiming the Gospel, as close as possible to the daily reality of the faithful to whom he is addressing", said father Jean-Noel Gossou, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies in Ivory Coast, in his address to the seminarians of the major Seminary of St. Paul d'Abadjin Kouté in the diocese of Yopougon.
The theme of "Faith and Inculturation" was the focus of the "Socio-Cultural Week" of the Seminar, established in 1993, during which the seminarians took part in a series of meetings, including the conference "The Priest and Culture" organized by the Pontifical Mission Societies. The conference, which also dealt with the origins, charism and mission of the Pontifical Mission Societies, aimed to make seminarians aware of the importance of living the mission of priesthood among the people to which one is called to be Pastors. "The priest must be rooted in the people to which he is sent and fully understand their history and culture", said the National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies. "The challenge for future priests is to develop a cultural awareness that allows them to live fully their priestly life in the environment to which they have been called". Knowledge of the language is the first element to focus on in order to fully understand a people's culture. "Language allows us to relate to our brothers and sisters and to master all the dynamism and exchanges that allow us a fruitful inculturation, as well as a full understanding of the socio-cultural reality to which we are called to bring light of the Gospel", concluded Father Gossou. (SS/EG) (Agenzia Fides, 29/1/2022)