09 July 2010
|With the new pastoral programme, JRS hopes to provide more support to returnees living in Yei (Angela Hellmuth/JRS)|
|The pastoral programme aims to improve the development opportunities and resources of the parish-based communities of the diocese.|
Yei, 1 June 2010 – Lay catechetical leaders representing all seven parishes within the Diocese of Yei, Southern Sudan, gathered along with their parish priests and diocesan officials from May 31 – June 1, 2010 to share with JRS their desires for further training in areas of the Catholic faith.
JRS Yei’s pastoral programme organised this two day workshop - the first for the new pastoral department - to take place at the Diocesan Pastoral Centre in Yei.
Working closely with the Diocesan Pastoral Coordinator, Fr. Emmanuel Sebit, and with the full support of Bishop Erkolano Lodu Tombe who attended the first day’s morning session, JRS used this workshop to listen to the needs of fourteen catechists and their seven pastors. The catechists and priests shared their enthusiasm for their ministry yet also mentioned that they need training. Only a few catechists have received training. In response, JRS Yei is now designing a weeklong workshop to address these needs.
Plans are to conduct a five day workshop for twenty catechists representing all the different parishes in each of the months of August, September, and November. The catechists and their pastors asked that these workshops provide training for them in areas such as church teaching, bible studies, sacraments, church history, leading prayer, liturgy, and empowering women among a number of others requested topics.
While the workshop required a lot of work in a short amount of time, nonetheless between the working sessions all the participants enjoyed each other’s company along with fine weather and good meals. "We now have a workable plan," Secretary General Fr. Joseph Arike said in his concluding remarks on behalf of the bishop, "and we can continue to go forward."
JRS has been present in Yei since 1994 providing education and pastoral care. The pastoral programme aims to improve the development opportunities and resources of the parish-based communities of the diocese, including through religious education and income-generating projects, leading to a growth in local leadership and self-help capabilities.
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