NAIROBI OCTOBER 18, 2016 (CISA) – Over 150 Catholic sisters from 15 countries gathered in Nairobi to discuss their role in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The four- day convention begun October 16-19 on the theme the Catholic Sisters: Champions of Sustainable Development in Africa.
The conference was sponsored by Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and African Sisters Education Collaborative (ASEC).
Speaking during the conference, Edmund Cain, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation Vice President-Grant Program, lauded the role of the sisters in improving human development all over the world.
“The human development aspect of improving the lives of the disadvantaged and the vulnerable is a role that the sisters have done so well for a very long time. This is why our focus as the foundation has been on the sisters. Your high degree of integrity and principle makes you unique,” said Cain.
“Sisters sometimes go to places where even the government cannot go. You work with the poor and poorest and do thankless and invisible work to which you are called by God. This boldness by sisters especially from Africa continues to inspire us,” he added.
While addressing the conference on the topic: Philanthropy, Government and Civil Society: A conversation Across Sectors, Fr Ferdinand Lugonzo, Secretary General, Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) called on the Catholic sisters to maintain their Catholic identity and charisma even when implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s).
“Competition to achieve results can wear us off and if we not careful as Church we may run with the society and lose who we are. It is important that you get back to this thinking that despite the SDG’s being proposed to us and the fact that we are key partners and stakeholders in implementation, let us not lose ourselves in the process,” said Fr Lugonzo.
“When you are running the schools, health centres, water projects remember to also consider the damage it can cause to the Catholic Church identity and the core of who we are,” added the cleric.
Among the sisters attending the conference are serving as church and government officials, faith based and community organisations, international, regional and local foundations.