Catholic Bishop in Cape Verde Urges Communion in Diversity at Ongoing Diocesan Jubilee

Credit: Mindelo Diocese

As the Catholic Diocese of Mindelo in Cape Verde continues with the three-year preparation for the 20th anniversary since it was established, the Local Ordinary of the Cape Verdean Episcopal See has called for communion amid “diversity of charisms”.

In a pastoral letter published August 24, Bishop Ildo Augusto dos Santos Lopes Fortes says the second part of the jubilee preparations, which were officially launched in September 2021 will focus on “the sense of belonging and participation of all”.

“Approaching the jubilee of the 20th anniversary of the Diocese, we continue to underline and do everything to make it the house and school of communion; the community that respects the diversity of charisms, sensitivities, visions and that does not exclude anyone,” Bishop  dos Santos says in the pastoral letter.

He adds, “In this sense, in the person of the Pastors of the communities and of the faithful, everyone who wishes to approach feels welcomed and called to be part of this family. And this should happen anytime, anywhere.”

He says that if anyone goes to the Church seeking information or requesting a service, “the doors of the heart should be the first to open”, and adds that while not everyone can become a leader in the Church, there is a place for every person.


“In the Christian assembly, it is certain that not everyone has to lead or be on the front line, but no one should feel sideways or excluded,” Bishop dos Santos says.

In the pastoral letter that is dated August 20, the 57-year-old Portuguese-born Bishop who has been at the helm of Mindelo Diocese since his Episcopal Ordinary in April 2011 underscores the need for strategic planning and implementation of activities that are planned at the level of Parishes.

He says, “Let parish Priests, instead of multiplying activities in the community, see with parish councils, which activity should be prioritized and at what is the appropriate time for them to happen so that there is a focus on what is truly essential.”

“May the conferences, formations, meetings, rehearsals, retreats, various preparations, festivities be thought of in a balanced and real way, without dispersions of what is the availability of our people,” Bishop dos Santos adds.

In the pastoral letter, the Catholic Church leader in Cape Verde also calls upon the people of God under his pastoral care to support the youth, especially as they prepare to participate in the World Youth Day (WYD) in Lisbon, Portugal, next year. 

More in Africa

“We have our eyes set on WYD Lisbon 2023, which will be one of those unique moments in the life of the young Christian,” he says, and continues, “It still has a privileged place to support our young people and I very much hope that they can participate in good numbers in this great world event.” 

Bishop dos Santos further says that the WYD 2023 “could be a good opportunity for a vocational awakening among young people.”

The WYD is held every three years. The 2023 chapter of the international event will be guided by the theme, “Mary Rose and Left Hastily.”

Reflecting on this theme, the Local Ordinary of Mindelo Diocese challenges the youth in his Episcopal See to examine what God wants with their respective lives. He poses, “Why not explore this Marian aspect in the life of young people and adolescents in order to a vocational ministry?”

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.