In their collective statement, which Archbishop Benjamin Ndiaye read out at the Press Conference, the Catholic Church leaders urge all Senegalese to make it their “common cause to save our nation” as they owe it to God and the future generations.
“We owe it to the Creator, in whom we believe, who expects from all of us a sincere and true commitment for the good of all,” they say.
They add, “We also owe it to the younger generations who expect their elders to inherit the ideals of truth, righteousness, justice, understanding and peace, as a precious heritage received from our ancestors.”
In their March 8 statement, the Catholic Prelates who comprise the Local Ordinaries of Dakar Archdiocese and the Dioceses of Kaolack, Kolda, Saint-Louis, Tambacounda, Thiès and Ziguinchor express their concerns about “human lives that have been torn from the affection of their loved ones, as a result of the unleashing of blind violence!”
“Seriously injured people will bear the scars of our violence for the rest of their lives,” they further say, adding that “public and private property, the fruit of a patrimony acquired through work, has been ransacked, looted, stolen, without any moral or ethical consideration, defying all justice, making the situation of many workers and their families even more precarious.”
Further, the Bishops say that the violence shows how the Senegalese people “could tip over into blind violence, which could threaten our social cohesion, if we allow ourselves to be dominated by our passions and personal interests.”
Describing the violence as a testimony to a “deep crisis within our Senegalese society,” the Bishops pose, probe, “Doesn't it then call us to measure our responsibilities and to pull ourselves together, all of us, and at all levels, from the top of the State to the citizen, through all State institutions, economic, social, cultural and religious structures, in the name of respect for human life and the Common Good?”
They call on God to bless the West African nation and her people and that He makes “a wind of reconciliation and peace blow in our hearts and minds.”
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.
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