God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

pensée of a Catholic priest

12.01.2010 Installation of a new bishop

Today, the invitation arrived via email to attend the installation of the new Archbishop of Cape Town, Stephen Brislin.  As always in the life of the church, a new bishop awaits a huge amount of different expectations and hopes. And these expectations and hopes are most times so far away from each other, that it seems to be a mission impossible to be a bishop in our days.  On the other hand: Within the church, a bishop has power and according to the CIC he is the head of the community of the faithful with many far-reaching rights. Especially when it comes to the lives of the priests – so much of their well-being hangs in balance with a good bishop’s rule. Humility and the knowledge, that we are all remain humans, even in the service of the church, are essential for such a service. And this is indeed the core of his vocation: To be a servant for the people of in this case Cape Town, to assist in the well-being of the people of God, to encourage and go with and lead those seeking to come closer to God.

And obviously, he does it not alone, but in communion with the other bishops and the bishop of Rome. In our days, it seems that this communion is rather centralized – word coming from Rome and filtering down to the different dioceses’.  From outside it looks and from inside it feels often as a one-way-road. It would be great if the communion and the collegium of the bishops will play a bigger role in the life of the universal church, so that also we from Cape Town, we from Africa can contribute more to the development of this universal church. It would also support the message of the African Synod which puts lots of responsibility on the church of Africa.

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HIV, AIDS and HOPE – thoughts of a Catholic priest

Being a Roman - Catholic priest and working in the fields of HIV and AIDS in Africa is often a challenge. Living in Africa has also its challenges. On the other hand I feel very much blessed having all the three. So you will find stories and reflections about my work, about the church, South Africa and Africa and essential information and developments in the field of HIV and AIDS. And in between personal stories and thoughts. You are most welcome to leave a comment or to get in touch with me - blogs - "thinking loud" so to speak is a ways of communication and exchange of ideas.

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