“These young men, studying at St Thomas Aquinas Major Seminary in Bambui, will not only support those in their faith communities but will be advocates for change and carers for all in need,” said Catholic Mission National director, Fr Brian Lucas.
“In many countries around the world priests often fulfil not only a leadership role for their local parish, but for the wider community.”
St Thomas Aquinas Major Seminary has seen a rise in the number of men following their vocation, despite ongoing conflict in Cameroon. However, with a rising cost of living, many seminarians like Benjamin cannot afford to continue their studies without help.
“I know I have something to contribute. I just want to do something simple, to be of service,” said Benjamin.
Since 2016, communities in the north-west of the country have faced ongoing conflict due to government oppression and separatist attacks between the French and English-speaking states of Cameroon. Over half a million people from rural communities have become internally displaced, with many fleeing to larger cities to escape the violence.
“We hear [gun] shots every day – it is very troubling, traumatic actually. We have to transform this situation and give witness to justice and peace,” said Benjamin.
“The training of priests in the mission territories, especially in places of conflict is an ongoing challenge,” Fr Brian said.
“Often local communities do not have the means to ensure their priests are well trained and Catholic Mission through the Society of Saint Peter Apostle provides the opportunity for future priests to fulfil their vocation.”
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