Sr. Grace Candiru, MSMMC – Nairobi, Kenya
ACWECA Secretary-General, Sr. Helen A. Bandiho in a letter, to religious women in Eastern and Central Africa has noted with concern, the growing number of those affected by the coronavirus disease in the ACWECA region.
“This pandemic is real and an invitation to read the signs of times and respond accordingly,” urged Sr Helen, adding that COVID-19 was a challenge to everything that ACWECA had planned to accomplish this year.
Board to decide on 2020 ACWECA Plenary Assembly
The Secretary-General singled out the 18th ACWECA Plenary Assembly scheduled for August this year. She disclosed that the organisation’s Executive Board would soon meet to make a decision on the way forward.
She further explained that the Plenary Assembly, which is a triennial event, brings together delegates from all countries of the ACWECA region to discuss issues related to sisters’ ministry in relation to their consecrated life.
Besides, the regional body has also been forced to cancel a six-week formation programme that was scheduled to commence early this week at the Nairobi Secretariat, Kenya. Equally affected are the five formation programmes that were to take place during the first half of this year.
Show care beyond convents
Re-echoing the fears of scientific experts, Sr. Bandiho noted with concern the rising cases of confirmed COVID-19 infections and deaths on the continent.
“The whole of Africa has a rising number of cases and some experts say that the continent is moving from COVID-19 readiness to response as many confirmed cases in some countries are increasing,” she observed.
Share what your congregation is doing
Sr Bandiho encouraged religious sisters in the region to do everything that they possibly could, within their charisms, to show generosity, love and care for the poor beyond their convents.
The Secretary-Gerenal, Sr Bandiho, who recently took over running of the ACWECA Regional Secretariat, challenged nuns to come up with innovative ways of addressing difficulties associatted wtth the coronavirus.
“What are we doing as ACWECA Sisters to address this pandemic, in our own small ways?” Religious women under the ACWECA umbrella, she said, needed to share ways in which their congregations were responding to COVID-19.
What is ACWECA?
ACWECA is a regional body of religious women congregations made up of 10 English speaking countries of Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. Zimbabwe is an associate member.