Supporting the young to grow in faith
By Clare Creegan
YOUNG Christians from Jordan to Georgia are to receive vital support to enable them to connect with others who share their faith and values in the latest series of grants announced by the Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Nee Need.
In the next round of aid payments, being rolled out next month, ACN grants will include the formation of seminarians in the Middle East and Africa, support for Sisters in Asia and Latin America and financial support for a Christian Summer Camp for 800 children from Armenia, Georgia and Russia.
In Georgia, ACN is supporting the Catholic Church’s annual two-week summer camp for hundreds of young people, many of whom come from poor families who would not otherwise be able to offer their children a holiday.
In many communities, the summer camps are the local Church’s only chance to carry out faith-building programmes to help the children grow in their faith as very often in such countries, young people go to secular schools.
Speaking to ACN, camp organiser Bishop Giuseppe Pasotto, Apostolic Administrator of the Caucasus, expressed his gratitude for the aid.
He said: “I only want to thank you and remind you that your financial participation becomes a pastoral participation for the life of this local Church, and a way to advance the kingdom of God.”
The charity is also supporting a summer camp for Coptic Christian children in Egypt and financial aid for five Catholic Youth summer camps in Jordan.
In a country where only 2.2 percent of the population are Christian, ACN recognises the importance of encouraging young people in Jordan to continue practising their faith in an effort to prevent Christianity disappearing from the Middle East.
In Pakistan, ACN is providing a car for St Francis Xavier Cathedral Parish in Hyderabad, Sindh Province, to allow priests, Sisters and catechists to minister to parishioners more easily.
Seminarians studying to become priests in the poorest regions of Africa will receive a substantial aid package to help support their theological formation.
The charity is providing more than $36,000 for scholarships to enable at least 77 students at the Catholic University of Rwanda to continue their studies with the department of catechesis for 2016.
ACN is also providing vital transport for parishes in Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
There are further grants for Church projects in Lebanon, Ukraine, Kenya, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Vietnam.
Directly under the Holy See, Aid to the Church in Need supports the faithful wherever they are persecuted, oppressed or in pastoral need. ACN is a Catholic charity – helping to bring Christ to the world through prayer, information and action.
The charity undertakes thousands of projects every year including providing transport for clergy and lay Church workers, construction of church buildings, funding for priests and nuns and help to train seminarians. Since the initiative’s launch in 1979, Aid to the Church in Need’s Child’s Bible – God Speaks to his Children has been translated into 172 languages and 50 million copies have been distributed all over the world.
While ACN gives full permission for the media to freely make use of the charity’s press releases, please acknowledge ACN as the source of stories when using the material.
For more information or to make a donation to help the work of Aid to the Church in Need, please contact the Australian office of ACN on (02) 9679-1929. e-mail: email@example.com or write to Aid to the Church in Need PO Box 7246 Baulkham Hills NSW 2153.
On Line donations can be made at www.aidtochurch.org
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