Month of the Bible: Catholics in DR Congo Urged to be “stewards of nature”

Credit: Vatican Media

Catholics in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have been urged to be “stewards of nature” during the annual month of the Bible declared by members of the National Episcopal Conference of Congo (CENCO).

Instituted in the DRC since 2009, the month of the Bible is a response to the false interpretations of the Word of God proposed by many new evangelical communities. The initiative also encourages the faithful to read and study the Bible in greater depth.

This year, the Episcopal Commission for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Biblical Apostolate at CENCO invited Christians to meditate on the theme, “Joseph fulfills his plan and is reconciled with his brothers.”

In a Monday, September 25 interview with ACI Africa, Fr. Jean Chrysostome Muyeye said, “This month of the Bible that we have been celebrating in our country since the 1st of September is mainly to arm our Christians on the word of God so that they can be able to defend their faith.”

“We have been reflecting and meditating on how to be good stewards of nature,” the member of the  Society of the Divine Savior (SDS), also known as Salvatorians, said.


He added, “We have some Biblical passages that our Bishops asked us to dwell on in connection with creation like Genesis 1:1 ‘In the beginning God created Heaven and earth’, cultivate and protect it Gen 2:15, Psalms 8…” 

The Congolese Catholic Priest further said, “We have been teaching in our Small Christian Communities showing them the importance of protecting what God created. It is a privilege for us humans to have been given that opportunity to be stewards of nature to safeguard God's creation.” 

The Curate of Our Lady of Fatima Manika Parish of Kolwezi Diocese highlighted some of the activities carried out during the month of the Bible.

 “We organized conferences, intensive teachings, and quizzes in our Small Christian Communities and at the end we’ll give African Bibles to winners,” he said, and added, “Concrete actions like each Small Christian Community should consecrate a day in doing manual labor and sanitation.”

“There should be a follow up committee in each parish, no artificial flowers henceforth on our altars and Christians should learn to confess their sins against ecology,” the Congolese Priest said.

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“The Bible is the first pastoral weapon each Christian should know how to use,” he said, and added, “I am alarmed by how our Christians are less interested in the scriptures. This is a great danger especially with the many churches and sects around growing every day in our community.”

He expressed regret that some Christians don’t have Bibles in their homes, adding, “I told Christians that if they want to know Christ they have to know the Scriptures because being ignorant of the scriptures, as St Jerome said, is being ignorant of Christ.”

Also speaking to ACI Africa about the Month of the Bible expected to end on September 30, Fr. Jules Kapya serving in DRC’s Lubumbashi Archdiocese said, “It’s regrettable to see how the majority of our Christians are not interested in the Holy Scriptures.” 

“If Christians are not interested in the scriptures, on what will their faith be built,” the SDS member posed.

He continued, “We are vulnerable Christians when we don’t know the Scriptures because the foundation is not solid.”


Emmanuel Ayuni in Yaounde, Cameroon, contributed to the writing of this story

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