AFRICA/TOGO - Faith can grow even in the difficulties that all missionaries face every day

Wednesday, 15 March 2023


Lomé (Agenzia Fides) - "Each of our young people has a story to live, to tell. We would like to share some of their reflections on mission, the joys, the difficulties, the challenges". It was Fathers Walter Woamede and Silvano Galli, of the Society for African Missions (SMA), who spoke at the end of the first trimester exams of the propaedeutic school that the SMA carry out in Lomè (see Fides, 24/1/2022).
The testimonies collected among the students were numerous and varied, but their common thread always leads back to the sense of the missionary vocation of each one. "A missionary is a person called by Christ to follow him, he must leave his culture, his environment and enter the culture of others. He is called to leave behind him, to forget where he comes from. He has to learn other languages, other traditions. I thank the Lord for my vocation". And again: "In the life of the missionary there are joys and difficulties. Joy is found above all in him who sent him, Christ. Pope Francis said: ‘The beauty of consecration is joy. And there is no holiness in sadness’.
One of the students added: "A missionary is one who has received a call and wants to follow it to receive a mission and fulfill it - said another student. He must not be afraid or discouraged, he must be strong and trust in God. We must not forget that many lose their lives in mission, as happened to our confrere Fr. Adrien Jeanne, killed in Côte d'Ivoire".
Diseases, epidemics, such as yellow fever which killed the first missionaries who arrived in Sierra Leone, wars are so many "obstacles" which are part of the daily life of those who dedicate their lives to the mission. "But difficulties make faith grow", said in unison the students of the Propaedeutics of Lomè who invited everyone to accompany them with prayer, support and friendship. (AP) (Agenzia Fides, 15/3/2023)