SOUTH AFRICA: Take Active Roles in Spreading the Gospel, Laypersons Urged

PRETORIA JANUARY 31, 2017 (CISA) – The chairperson of the Laity Council in Southern Africa has reminded Catholic laypersons of their ‘distinct and very real’ role in spreading the gospel.

The chairperson Mr Malatsi Leonard Kope was speaking during the launch of Southern African Catholic Bishops Laity Council according to Vatican Radio. The function held in South Africa was graced by Southern African Bishops.

Mr Kope said that the roles of the Laity are crucial in spreading the gospel in the Church and they should carry them with authority.

“To many of us, lay faithful, there is a notion that the only real vocation in the church is in the ordained or vowed priesthood and religious life. We still believe the church is the ordained office of priests and the religious,” Kope noted.

“We think of them as being the only ones who are called to serve. The actual teaching of the Church is that lay people have a distinct and very real role in the spreading of the Gospel, which the church desperately needs them to carry out with authority, creativity power that the Holy Spirit has given to them in Baptism,” he added.

He thanked the Bishops for their roles in bringing about awareness and encouraging them to play their distinctive role in the Church.

Kope further urged the laity in the Southern Africa to participate and engage more meaningfully in all Commissions of the Bishops’ Conference, dioceses and parishes.

“Through continued formations and more involvement of the laity in the life of Mother Church, the world will be brought closer to encountering Christ,” said the council Chairperson.

He challenged the Catholic Laity in the region to strengthen family life, as it was in the family that the first contact with God happens. He reminded them that the family was the first Church.

The Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) has been meeting at St. John Vianney Seminary in Pretoria in the country. The Bishops conference comprises Botswana, the Republic of South Africa and Swaziland.

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