Soldiers to Be Drilled — in the Catechism

BOGOTA, Colombia, SEPT. 8, 2003 ( Aid to the Church in Need donated 150,000 copies of the Catechism of the Catholic Church to the military bishop of Colombia as part of an educational program for soldiers.

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Military personnel are organized according to their chaplaincies, where they take the course and prepare to receive the sacraments.

Monsignor Javier Rojas, vicar general of the military episcopacy, said the project «is very important as the Church is concerned about the religious ignorance of the majority of the soldiers.»

He said that the military chaplaincies administer close to 100 adult-baptisms every year, some 15,000 confirmations, and an even greater number of first Communions.

Sources of the Germany-based Aid to the Church in Need stressed the importance of the initiative, recalling that more than 700 soldiers die every year in the struggle against the guerrillas and drug traffickers in Colombia.

For his part, Argentine military Bishop Antonio Baseotto said that he hopes to implement the same program in his country.

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