SOUTH AFRICA: CARITAS Discusses Response to Covid-19 in Virtual Assembly


CAPE-TOWN, JULY 24, 2020 (CISA)-Wilfrid Fox Cardinal Napier, the President of Caritas South Africa, has urged members of Caritas to be quick in projecting future plans to address challenges of post Covid-19.

He made the remarks during his opening address at a webinar of the 3rd Assembly of Caritas South Africa attended by coordinators from 22 SACBC Dioceses.

“Cardinal Napier urged coordinators of Caritas to be like the disciples of Christ by not keeping quiet about the misfortunes but stand strong in addressing the plight of the poor and win for them self-esteem and self-respect. He said Caritas is bound with the kind of call during the scourge of Covid-19,” reads the July 21 report by Paul Tatu of the SACBC Communication and Media Office.

Cardinal Napier said there is a need to raise awareness about the increasing infections of Covid-19, calling on parish leaders and priests to be well prepared to address the challenges posed by Covid-19 when the churches will be opened.

“There is a greater need of Ubuntu to tackle the problems of Covid-19. Though united in fear of the disease, there is a need to unite in solidarity to tackle challenges of Covid-19,” it reads.

The Cardinal applauded Caritas South Africa for their solidarity with the poor during Covid-19 and their effective response to the challenges posed by the pandemic. He also affirmed them for the excellent work of responding to the needs of migrants and refugees during the time when they were excluded from government relief fund.

“We were there for them when nobody wanted to be there”, he said acknowledging Caritas Internationalis for their unreserved support during the tough times of Covid-19.

Present during the webinar Mr Aloysius John, the Secretary General of Caritas Internationalis said Caritas South Africa plays a very important role not only in South Africa but the whole Africa. He applauded them for being involved in addressing the challenges posed by Covid-19, migrants and refugees.

“They need to start now asking themselves how they are going to develop Caritas in the parishes and promote dignity of human persons; about their unique role in receiving and accompanying the migrants and the role they are going to play in the misfortunes of Middle East,” he remarked further urging them to advance the spirit of solidarity.

Mr. Albert Mashika, the Regional Executive General Secretary of Caritas Africa applauded Caritas South Africa for the structure and developed procedures they have established since 2017. He said they have already established Caritas in 22 Dioceses of South Africa.

“Mr. Mashika also applauded Caritas South Africa for being able to establish good working relationship and collaboration with the government of South Africa, other churches and charity organisations,” the report reads.

“There is a need to work together and allow the spirit of Christ to guide us because the work of charity is not easy,” Mr. William Kelly, the Coordinator of Caritas IMBISA said.

The 3rd Assembly of Caritas South Africa also deliberated on different issues, such as Covid-19 Caritas South Africa response’s reports from different diocese of South Africa, the way to register the remaining SACBC Diocese to become members of Caritas South Africa and Caritas South Africa annual report.