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Pope: Catholic educators on a common project at the service of humanity

Catholic education programmes and resources must give voice to a Word that surpasses and transcends us, Pope Francis writes in a message to a conference held by the International Office of Catholic Education (OIEC), and must form individuals in their integrity, creating bridges of dialogue between people of all faiths.

The message was addressed to Philippe Richard, Secretary General of the OIEC that is meeting in Marseille, France, to discuss the role of Catholic educators in restoring the fabric of relationships for the sake of a more fraternal humanity.

Describing education as an essential part of the life of the Church, the Pope said that education is a duty and a challenge, and for the Christian, “it is also a way of participating in the prophetic role that Jesus left to his Church.” “When we approach education we cannot do so thinking of something merely human, focusing the question on programmes, training, resources, areas of reception, since the Christian vocation asks us to give voice to a Word that is not ours, that surpasses us, that transcends us,” he said.

He invited teachers and those who draw up educational programmes to always be attentive to the formation of individuals in their integrity, which he explained, means not only providing tools to acquire knowledge, “but also to know oneself and to recognise oneself as a being capable of loving and being loved.”

Pope Francis concluded his message by reminding all those engaged in Catholic education to grow in wisdom and to be aware that this is work that cannot be done without God's help, without the support of all and with the strength of the Spirit of the Risen Lord. “May He enlighten your work and grant you that science which rises from human realities to reach the sublime knowledge of God.
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Pope to travel to DRC and South Sudan in early 2023

The Holy See Press Office announces that Pope Francis will travel to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan for an ecumenical peace pilgrimage from 31 January to 5 February 2023, journeys postponed in the past due to health reasons. His visit had originally been scheduled for the summer of 2022, but had to be postponed due to health issues.

The Apostolic Journey was announced in a statement from the Director of the Holy See Press Office: "Accepting the invitation of their respective Heads of State and Bishops, His Holiness Pope Francis will make the announced Apostolic Journey to the Democratic Republic of Congo from 31 January to 3 February 2023, visiting the city of Kinshasa, and, together with the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, the Ecumenical Pilgrimage of Peace to Juba, South Sudan, from 3 to 5 February next."

Highlights of the Pope's Apostolic Journey will include a visit with representatives from charitable organizations in the Democratic Republic of Congo; and in South Sudan, a meeting with internally displaced persons and an Ecumenical Prayer service.
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Pope grieves for “wise and gentle pastor” Cardinal Baawobr

Pope Francis on Tuesday expressed sorrow for the death of Cardinal Richard Kuuia Baawobr, Archbishop of Wa, who died unexpectedly in Rome on Sunday evening. In a telegram in which he extends his heartfelt condolences to the Cardinal’s family, to the Missionaries of Africa of which he was part, to the clergy, religious and laity of the Diocese of Wa, the Pope said he is grateful for the Cardinal’s faithful witness to the Gospel, “marked by generous service to the Church in Ghana, especially to those in need.”

“I willingly join the faithful in praying that our merciful Father may grant to this wise and gentle pastor the reward of his labours and welcome him into the light and peace of heaven.”

The Pope’s telegram concluded with words of comfort for all those who are mourning the late Cardinal’s passing in the sure hope of the Resurrection and with his apostolic blessing “as a pledge of consolation and peace in Jesus, the firstborn from the dead.

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