Sunday, October 04, 2009

Opening of the Afrrican Synod

The Holy Father opened the Synod for Africa in St Peters this morning, he spoke of Africa as being a spiritual lung for the world.

But this "spiritual lung" that Africa is for a mankind "in crisis of faith and hope," risks "infection" from "two dangerous diseases": "First, a disease that has spread throughout the Western world, namely practical materialism, combined with relativistic and nihilistic thinking”. "The so-called 'first' world - explained Benedict XVI - at times has exported and is exporting spirituality toxic waste, which infects the population in other continents, including in particular those in Africa. In this sense, colonialism, which ended at a political level, never completely ended”.

The second "virus" is "religious fundamentalism, mixed with political and economic interests. Groups claiming different religious affiliations are spreading in Africa; they do so in the name of God, but according to a logic that is the opposite to that of God, they do not teach and practice love and respect for freedom, but intolerance and violence.

Parallel to the theme of the "supremacy of God" for the pope, the work of the synod must focus on two themes: that of marriage and children.

Faced with the multiple ways in which the marriage is experienced in African cultures, often marked by polygamy and the humiliation of the women, Benedict XVI says that "marriage as the Bible presents it, does not exist outside of our relationship with God". This focus comes before "any kind of moral reflection or indication”. Thus, "to the extent that preserves and develops its faith, Africa can find huge resources to donate to the benefit of the family founded on marriage."

The third aspect that the synod should pay attention to is "the reality of childhood, which is a large and unfortunately suffering part of the African population."

Asia News continues


Fr Ray Blake said...

MP, HMQ is not relevant here.

nickbris said...

Africa will never be forgiven for getting rid of the plundering Imperialists.Now they have to rely on AID.They will never be allowed to stand on their own feet because the feet have been stolen from beneath them.

Africa contains everything that the so-called FIRST WORLD cannot live without yet they are still considered useless and incapable of running their own countries.

Anthony Bidgood said...

Dear Father Blake,

This story reminds me of a White Father's comment in the late 1930's when he was in Uganda. Roughly, from memory, he wrote "Europe seems to be the rejecting the graces which Africa is accepting". Seventy years later Europe seems to be much more dedicated to rejecting these graces.

In Christo,
Anthony Bidgood

Independent said...

Missionaries, schools, roads, railway systems,communications, an incorrupt civil service, hospitals, are just a few of the benefits of British Imperialism. How unfortunate are those who never received these advantages.

Independent said...

How unfortunate that the educated middle class people who provided the rulers of post-colonial Africa repudiated the missionaries and looked to Western Secularism (usually in Marxist form) for an ideology. That indeed was toxic waste and the rulers imposed it on their own countries and used it to legitimate dictatorship.

Crux Fidelis said...

Schools and hospitals were provided, in the main, by missionaries not by British Imperialism. The roads, communications and civil service were put in place to support British Imperialism not the local populace. Imperialism, whether it be British, French, Dutch, Belgian or whatever was responsible for despoliation, want and hunger. Unfortunately, post-Imperialism the lot of the poor has not generally improved. The new masters have learned very well from their predecessors.

nickbris said...

Crux Fidelis.I entirely agree.

Trouble is The Colonial Imperialists have done a good job of brainwashing their own people.

They still believe they were doing good for the peoples they exploited and plundered.India has got over it a bit but it will be some years yet before they recover from the likes of CLIVE.

It will take Zimbabwe a lot longer to get over Cecil Rhodes.

Crux Fidelis said...

All credit to the missionaries who must have had a gargantuan task in preaching the Gospel to the native peoples of the colonies. Their imperialist overlords were hardly a shining example of Christianity in action.

Independent said...

Imperialism was "responsible for despoliation, want, and hunger"? You really must discard your old Marxist textbooks on this question. There was no mythical pre-Imperialist African society which lacked these defects. They were mitigated by imperialism not caused by it. I can remember talking to old missionaries to Central Africa who could remember previous African society.