Africa's Delegates to Synod in Synodality in Nairobi to “deepen their knowledge and understanding of Synodality”

Delegates during the 1-6 March 2023 SECAM Plenary Assembly in Ethiopia’s capital city, Addis Ababa. Credit: ACI Africa

Delegates to represent the Church in Africa at the second session of the Synod on Synodality are meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, to “deepen” their insights about Synodality ahead of the 2-29 October 2024 session in Rome.

The April 23-26 workshop taking place at Roussel House of Donum Dei Missionary Sisters in Karen, Nairobi, has been organized by the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) in collaboration with the African Synodality Initiative (ASI).

In an April 23 statement availed to ACI Africa, the Secretary General of SECAM, Fr. Rafael Simbine Junior, says the workshop aims to offer the delegates “the avenue to reflect on the guiding questions proposed by the Secretariat for the Synod in view of the 2024 Assembly (Towards October 2024) in the process of listening, dialogue and discernment.”

SECAM Secretary General, Fr. Rafael Simbine Junior greeting Pope Francis in Rome. Credit: SECAM

The workshop aims to help the Synod delegates of the Church in Africa to “deepen their knowledge and understanding of Synodality and focus on the question for the next session of the Synod: How can we become a synodal Church in mission?” Fr. Simbine says.


The member of the Clergy of Mozambique’s Catholic Diocese of Xai-Xai adds that the workshop offers the delegates an opportunity “to share and gather good experiences and practices that are significant for the growth of a missionary synodal dynamism within the Church to be sent to the General Secretariat in Rome by May 15, 2024”.

The gathering in Nairobi gives the delegates representing the Church in Africa at Synod on Synodality, which Pope Francis extended to 2024, with the first session, 4-29 October 2023, having concluded with a 42-page summary report an opportunity to share “what they have lived, taught, learnt and observed during the almost six months since the conclusion of the first session in October 2023.”

The four-day workshop set to conclude on Friday, April 26 brings together some 50 delegates and experts from Africa and its islands.

Earlier this month, Robert Cardinal Sarah, the Prefect Emeritus of the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, urged Africa's Catholic Bishops to defend the Catholic faith at the October 2024 session of the Synod on Synodality.

“At the next session of the Synod, it is vital that the African Bishops speak in the name of the unity of the faith, and not in the name of particular cultures,” Cardinal Sarah told members of the National Episcopal Conference of Cameroon (NECC) on April 9.

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Credit: ACI Africa

The Church in Africa, the Guinean-born Cardinal said, “is charged with proclaiming the word of God in the face of Western Christians who, because they are rich, believe themselves to be evolved, modern and wise in the wisdom of the world.”

“It seems that, by a mysterious design of providence, African Bishops are now the defenders of the universality of the faith in the face of the proponents of a fragmented truth; Africans are the defenders of the unity of the faith in the face of the proponents of the culture of relativism,” Cardinal Sarah said.

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