Church “committed to caring for human life” Through Education: Catholic Priest

Fr. Augustin Germain Messomo Ateba. Credit: UCAC

The Church is “committed to caring for human life” through initiatives in formal education, a Catholic Priest serving at the Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC) has said.

Speaking at an international colloquium marking the 65th anniversary of the Catholic University of Congo (UCC) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Wednesday, April 27, Fr. Augustin Germain Messomo Ateba also reflected on the particular interest Pope Francis has in Catholic education.

“The Catholic Church through its schools, including its universities, is committed to caring for human life. Its schools train students effectively for the earth and to prepare for the Kingdom of God,” Fr. Ateba said.

The Cameroonian Catholic Priest added, “Catholic Schools and universities in this sense are precious instruments whose mission is to educate the minds of the youth.”

“Pope Francis never ceases to express himself on globalization and its perverse effects on the economic, political and human development,” the Professor of Dogmatic Theology at UCAC said during the international colloquium April 27 in his presentation titled, “Education and reconstruction of peace in Africa”.


A Christian ecclesiastical university has a threefold mission, Fr. Ateba said in reference to Pope Francis, and enlisted them as “to educate to responsibility the choices of others and vis-à-vis culture; second, to have an education concerned with Christianity in its entirety; and finally, an education open to all without discrimination.”

Established in 1957, UCC is an institution of the National Episcopal Conference of Congo (CENCO).

Also speaking at the international colloquium, Sr. Rita Mboshu Kongo said, “Education remains the central role of the Church to build peace in the perspective of the global educational pact of Pope Francis.”

In her presentation titled, “The global educational pact of Pope Francis and the Construction of Social Peace in Africa”, the Congolese Catholic Nun said, “Education occupies an important place in the pontiff's magisterium.”

“For the Holy Father education is not a job but rather an attitude, a way of life. It is the ability to bring out the talents of students,” the member of the Congregation Daughters of Mary, the Most Holy, Co-Redemptrix said.

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She added, “Mutual respect and listening are the bases of this education.”

The professor of Spirituality and Formation to Consecrated Life at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome said, “Pope Francis wants an integral education capable of bringing about the transformations necessary for a more fraternal world.”

“Such an education emphasizes the grammar of dialogue that facilitates the encounter of cultural and religious diversity in order to build peace,” Sr. Mboshu said.

She added, “The spirituality that takes into account listening, respect and creativity determines the very role of the Church in the educational process.”

“The Church must be communicative. She must go out, like God who always goes out to meet man because He loves him, because He is Father,” she said.


The Congolese Catholic added, “Education for peace allows us to welcome the difference of the other not as a threat but as an opportunity.”

At the inaugural lecture, Tuesday, April 26, the Cardinal in the Central African Republic (CAR) underscored the importance of interreligious dialogue in peace building.

“Interreligious dialogue is an indispensable path to peace building in the world today and deserves to be considered an absolute necessity and the deepest aspiration of the human race,” Dieudonné Cardinal Nzapalainga said.

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.