People have been found dead in abandoned buildings or in the bushes. Traditional healers also target people with albinism owing to the belief that their organs can promote the cure of some illnesses.
In their May 20 collective statement issued at the end of their third ordinary plenary session for the pastoral year 2020/2021, the Catholic Bishops in Benin call for conversion saying, “May the perpetrators of these crimes repent from their evil ways and seek the mercy of God.”
The Plenary Assembly examined issues relating to Seminaries and houses of formation for future Priests.
CEB members also welcomed the new Apostolic Nuncio in Benin and Togo, Archbishop Mark Gerard Miles, whom Pope Francis appointed in February 2021. They implored the abundance of divine graces for a fruitful apostolic ministry at the service of the people of God in the two West African countries.
In their May 20 statement signed by CEB President, Bishop Victor Agbanou, the Catholic Bishops express concern about “the divisions among politicians, multiple arrests, the climate of mistrust and fear which reigns in the heart of the population and the expression of various feelings of frustration.”
The Catholic Church leaders appeal for “the construction of a new order of living together based on the contribution of all, in dialogue, tolerance and reconciliation in line with the motto of our country: Fraternity - Justice - Work.”
Making reference to Pope emeritus Benedict XVI during his visit to Benin in November 2011, the Bishops say, “The word Fraternity, which is part of our motto invites us to live together as brothers, despite our legitimate differences.”
They add, “It is for us to show the rest of the world the way to live an authentic fraternity in justice based on the greatness of family and work.”
“May God, the Sovereign Master of all peoples, continue to bless and protect our country, Benin,” CEB members implore, and invoke the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Church in the West African nation.
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