2016-10-26 17:32:00

Pan-African meeting: Entrenching SCCs in the Church

Strengthening and networking of Small Christian Communities (SCCs) in Africa and beyond can be a significant contribution of the African Church to the world, the one-week Pan-African meeting on SCCs has observed.  The meeting which convened in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi, early this week, brought together 16 participants from Kenya, Burkina Faso, Germany, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Malawi and Zambia.

Speaking at the meeting, Tanzania’s Auxiliary Bishop of Bukoba Diocese, Method Kilaini said the idea of SCCs started in the then Zaire (Democratic Republic of Congo) in 1961, as the fruit of the Second Vatican Council. 

Bishop Kilaini quoted Saint Pope John Paul II who praised SCCs saying that Small Christian Communities are focused on, "Christians coming together for prayer, Scripture reading, catechesis and discussion on human and ecclesial problems with a view to a common commitment. These communities are a sign of vitality within the Church, an instrument of formation and evangelization, and a solid starting point for a new society based on 'civilisation of love.'" 

The Auxiliary Bishop of Bukoba Diocese explained that the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) countries embraced the concept of Small Christian Communities in 1973 and then adopted the idea as a pastoral priority of the region in 1976. After that, different conferences, dioceses and parishes in Africa started rolling out SCCs as a pastoral programme.

Bishop Kilaini who has more than ten years experience in coordinating activities of Small Christian Communities at the Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC) has urged a subtle shift towards networking SCCs with the view to enhancing evangelization.

The Bishop further said that SCCs needed to be made “more systematic by creating social media platforms such as WhatsApp groups, websites, blogs and Facebook to help interact, exchange ideas and share experiences with the World,” he added that the Catholic faithful in Germany had shown interest in SCCs. 

(Rose Achiego in Nairobi)

Email engafrica@vatiradio.va


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