Catholics in Khartoum Remember Comboni and Garang

The Catholic Community in the Archdiocese of Khartoum, under the leadership of His Eminence Gabriel Cardinal Zubeir Wako, Metropolitan Archbishop of Khartoum and Honorary Patron of the Catholic Church in Sudan celebrated mass on 10 October 2005 the Feast of St. Daniel Comboni - First Catholic Bishop of the Sudan who was canonized as a saint by Pope John Paul II on 5 October 2003.

The Eucharistic celebration, held at Comboni Play Ground in Khartoum was presided over by Cardinal Zubeir Wako and co-celebrated by priests from Khartoum, Christian faithful from the Catholic Church as well from other Christian denominations. The attendance was estimated - by the Archdiocesan Liturgical Committee - to be more than 500,000 people.

In his homily, Cardinal Zubeir Wako stated that the Christians in Sudan and people all over the world were living in a world full of violence and violence itself was not good news, especially in Sudan where many people had been killed. The news of killing had become part and parcel of people’s life. He appealed to the people to unite because in unity there is strength. People of the Sudan have been traumatized and seriously wounded by war, and Sudanese became people who have many reasons to exhibit hatred towards their brothers and sisters. He called on the people of Sudan to have foresight to look forward for new beginning full optimism.

Development of the Sudanese people means they should change from doing what is bad to doing what is good, change from disasters to goodness, from sickness to health, from ignorance to being people who understand realities around them and have program for the progress of the nation.
Developmental programmes for Africa must emanate from Africans themselves and that development of Sudan must come from Sudanese. He advised that priests should know that the future of the people was in their hands as religious people and that they should take good care of their people.
Africans should take Jesus Christ as a 'Model and Wisdom from God'. "Time of Comboni has gone. Now Africans must stand on their own feet", he said. He went on to add that an African can stand up in any corner of the world and evangelises as a white man does.

He cited Europe where he had been visiting two weeks ago before coming back to Khartoum as a prototype. He said he met many African priests from Congo, Kenya and many other countries. These African priests took good care of European parishes because the European clergymen forfeited priesthood because they assumed that there were many Christians in Europe! Cardinal Wako remarked, “An African can do it” .

During the prayers of the faithful, four young girls offered prayers to God asking to rest in eternal peace the soul of the beloved Sudanese hero Dr. John Garang de Mabior who sacrificed his life for peace in Sudan. They offered prayers for the leaders of the new Government of Southern Sudan and the leaders of SPLM in order to take good care of the people who have suffered so much from the war that ravaged the South during the last 21 years. The girls asked God to unite the people of the South to work for the common good of their people.
They prayed to God to intercede and help the people of the South overcome differences in opinion and give them divine wisdom so that they may work for the good of the South. They also offered a prayer for the children of late Garang and prayed for the success of the peace talks in Abuja so that peace is achieved in Darfur so that the whole country may flourish in peace. Incense was burnt and its smoke went up as Christians prayed for the Soul of Dr. Garang.

The Cardinal advised the youth of the Sudan to avoid staying idle and loitering in the markets and streets of Khartoum. Many of the youth were intelligent and strong but needed to open up themselves up to Jesus Christ and things will change!

Posted in: Governance
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