Secretaries and National Directors of Caritas Africa held a meeting Nairobi, Kenya where they denounced their “indignation with regards to the suffering imposed on the innocent civilian population. The participants voiced their concerns in a final declaration that was sent to Fides News Agency.
The statement called attention to the dire situation currently affecting the Central African Republic following a coup by Séléka, a rebel coalition, in March. Several reports state that hospitals and health centers in the country have been ransacked while government and police forces have been disbanded.
“We welcome and support the courageous and prophetic efforts undertaken by the Church of the Central African Republic to restore hope to the people who are suffering and to work to prevent the extension of this crisis as well as prevent its insidious transformation into a religious conflict,” the declaration states.
Caritas Africa has launched an appeal, urging the United Nations, the African Union, as well as the European Union to assist in ending the chaotic situation. The Catholic organization has also requested aid from the Bishops who will gather for the upcoming Plenary Assembly of the Symposium of the Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) to authorize the start of collecting gifts in the Churches of Africa to aid the people of the Central African Republic.
The final declaration also states a commitment to spread in all African Churches knowledge of two documents: the Declaration of Bishops made in Kinshasa in 2012 on the identity and Mission of Caritas in the light of the Encyclical “Deus Caritas Est”, and the Motu Proprio “Intima Ecclesiae Natura” on the service of charity.