, 14 January, 2020 / 10:25 PM
In an effort to promote sustainability and self-reliance in local Churches across the Eastern Africa region, representatives of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) under the institution’s capacity building project are currently in Zambia for a two-week training in financial management of Church institutions, the Coordinator of the project has told ACI Africa.
“Over the years, AMECEA as a regional office took mandate to empower the agents of evangelization. It is a call to improve and assist the Church staff to deliver to expectations and (record) positive results in the areas of their mandate,” the Coordinator of AMECEA’s Capacity Building Project, Christine Mbugi told ACI Africa end of last week.
The training, which targets Priests and has the objective of building knowledge and skills, is expected to enhance self-reliance in view of ensuring that “Church institutions are sustainable,” Ms. Mbugi said.
“Participants will apply the knowledge and skills acquired and stir up the institutions they lead towards self-reliance and sustainability,” Ms. Mbugi said about the training that will conclude January 17.
Explaining the downward flow of the beneficiaries of the training taking place in Zambia’s capital, Lusaka, the priests, who are “Trainers of Trainers (TOTs) for the next level of participants” are expected to train other Church personnel in their respective dioceses, deaneries, parishes, and small Christian Communities (SCC), “until all levels are covered to the grassroots,” the Nairobi-based Coordinator explained.
With funding from Missio Aachen and the German Catholic Bishops, the training that kicked off January 7 is being facilitated by personnel drawn from the Kenya-based Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) and the Zambia Catholic University (ZCU) in Kitwe.
The ongoing training is a follow up of the February 2019 one that saw Bishops under the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops (ZCCB) trained in financial management, the Kenyan-born Coordinator said.
“As the project began with Bishops, we have had a lot of engagement in partnership programs,” Ms. Mbugi said
On his part, ZCCB Secretary General, Fr. Cleophas Lungu recalled last year’s training of Bishops as beneficial to the Church in the Southern Africa nation.
“The Bishops having gone through this program, they are hopeful that our Church here in Zambia will be empowered,” AMECEA Online Newsletter reported Friday, January 10.
The Zambian cleric described the training as “quite comprehensive,” “well packaged” and in line with ZCCB’s strategic plan.
He explained, “One of the key focus areas and outcomes in the ZCCB strategic plan is to have a well-managed Church institution with management systems that are efficient, effective, and with best practices of managing its resources,” something the training is achieving.
Meanwhile, the Secretary General of AMECEA, Fr. Anthony Makunde recognized the resourcefulness of the people of God within the Eastern Africa territory saying, “The Church in the AMECEA region though fairly young, is vibrant and ever growing with resources, and it is a Church with brains. It is a Church which has got a vision and a goal.”
Some of the topics being covered in the ongoing training include, Church administration, resource mobilization, financial management, project planning, business ethics and human resource management, among others.
ACI Africa was officially inaugurated on August 17, 2019 as a continental Catholic news agency at the service of the Church in Africa. Headquartered in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, this media apostolate will strive to facilitate the telling of Africa’s story by providing media coverage of Catholic events on the African continent, giving visibility to the activities of the Church across Africa where statistics show significant growth in numbers and the continent gradually becoming the axis of Catholicism. This is expected to contribute to an awareness of and appreciation for the significant role of the Church in Africa and over time, the realization of a realistic image of Africa that often receives negative media framing.
Father Don Bosco Onyalla
Editor-in-Chief, ACI Africa