The Missionaries of Africa

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Who We Are - Some Information About the Missionaries of Africa

The "Missionaries of Africa", also known as the White Fathers, is an international Missionary Society of priests, brothers and cooperators founded in 1868 by Cardinal Lavigerie. Established in North Africa, the Society has always placed special emphasis on its work within Africa.

The Missionaries of Africa come from many different countries in Africa and around the world, and from the outset, great importance has always been attached to the international nature of the Society, with French and English being the official languages.

Any ministry which has a real relationship with Africa, no matter in what part of the world it may be, is considered by the Missionaries of Africa to be within the scope of their Apostolate.

The Missionaries of Africa lay special stress on the family spirit, having a life of prayer and work in common. Even though our work may take us for some time away from our communities, the community is the home to which we return.

Through pastoral ministry, the media, social welfare, justice and peace, leadership training, educational and medical work, the Missionaries of Africa aim to be of service to the Church in Africa. Today most of the Bishops in Africa are Africans. They are assisted in their work by an ever increasing number of African priests and Religious. We offer ourselves to the Church in Africa in a spirit of partnership. The missionary today will find himself engaged in many different types of activity: parish ministry, helping to train future priests in seminaries, and also working in other educational establishments. He will find himself involved in working with newspaper, television and radio journalists, with justice and peace groups, ministering to refugees, to name but a few.

In many places the Missionaries of Africa help in building up self reliant Small Christian Communities so people can experience for themselves the light of the Gospel at a 'grass roots' level. At the same time, much of our work is still of a pioneering nature, and missionaries have to be prepared to adapt themselves to changing circumstances.

Thanks to the heroic efforts of missionaries working in Africa since the end of the nineteenth century, the increase in the number of African Christians is vastly out-pacing the supply of African priests, brothers and co-operators required to attend to the spiritual needs of these peoples.

Many parishes in Africa are understaffed, simply because there is nobody to send there. At the same time, within the Dioceses in Africa, there are vast areas where the fulfillment of the Church's commission to the world has still to be initiated or consolidated. It is especially here that the Missionaries of Africa see their task today.

If you would like to know more about us please see the page
"Who We Are - Frequently Asked Questions"



Who We Are






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