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Prayer in Solidarity With Our Sisters and Brothers in Cameroon

Cathy Molloy, CND and Stacy Hanrahan, CND

If you in your hearts had only understood on this day the message of Peace!  Lk. 19- 42)

Introduction:  Background  from Church community and International Community

Since Friday September 22, 2017, and particularly from midnight on Friday 29 to midnight on Monday Oct. 2nd, the people of the North West and South West Regions of Cameroon, which are coterminous with Ecclesiastical Province of Bamenda, have gone through a very challenging and crucial period.  Although the danger is not yet over, we, the Bishops of the Bamenda Provincial Episcopal Conference (BAPEC), consider it our bounded and God-given duty to make this declaration... to share with our brothers and sisters and people of good will what we have gone through up till now and possibly to contribute to the prevention of worse that may still come if our voice, which is that of the voiceless and similar other well-intentioned voices are not heeded by the competent authorities.

Reiterating Deep Concern about Cameroon, Secretary-General Strongly Condemns Continued Violence, Calls for De-escalation. The following statement was issued Oct. 2, 2017 by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General António Guterres:  the Secretary-General remains deeply concerned about the situation in Cameroon and strongly condemns the acts of violence reported in the south-west and north-west regions of the country on 1 October, including reported loss of life.  He calls on the Cameroonian authorities to investigate these incidents and urges political leaders on both sides to appeal to their followers to refrain from any further acts of violence.

Opening Hymn:  Pax Amor Christi (or one of your choosing)

Invocation   Loving God of justice and compassion help us to live the words of

Marguerite Bourgeoys in these dangerous times:  It is not enough to be charitable to our neighbor, we must keep our neighbor in an attitude of charity towards us.  wmb   We ask this name of Jesus our brother and the Christ, and of the Holy Spirit our counselor and consoler.  Amen

PSALM  86 (in two choirs or together, or  as you choose)

Antiphon: If you in your hearts had only understood on this day the message of Peace*

Listen to me Yahweh, answer me, for I am poor and needy.

Guard me for I am faithful, save your servant who relies on you.

You are my God, take pity on me, Lord for to you I cry all the day.

Fill your servant’s heart with peace, for to you I raise up my heart.*

You are kind and forgiving, rich in faithful love for all who call upon you.

Yahweh, hear my prayer, listen to the sound of my pleading.

In my day of distress I call upon you, because you answer me;

Among the gods there is none to compare with you, no great deeds to compare with yours. *

Give to your servant your strength, to the child of our servant your saving help,

   give me a sign of your kindness.

Glory to You source of all being…

Gospel:  John 17: 18 - 21

Response:  Pax Amor Christi (refrain)

Intercessions:     Response     Come Holy Spirit

Our Father (together)

Closing prayer:  Lord our God, you have given all your peoples one common origin, and your will is to gather us as one family in yourself.  Fill each and all our hearts with the fire of your love and the desire to ensure justice for all our brothers and sisters.  By sharing the good things, you give us may we secure justice and equality for every human being, an end to all division, and a human society built on love and peace.  We ask this through Christ our brother and the intercession of Notre Dame des Apotres patroness of Cameroon, Amen.

* If you wish to light candles, the names of the five dioceses are Kumbo, Bamenda, Mamfe, Buea   and Kumba.  and one for our CND Sisters and Associates of  Region Notre Dame-des Aptotre;

Prepared by:  Cathy Molloy, CND

                       Stacy Hanrahan, CND

                       Encouraged by Rose Mary Sullivan, CND


Taken from the

DECLARATION OF THE BISHOPS OF THE BAMENDA PROVINCIAL EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE (BAPEC) FOLLOWING THE MASSIVE DEMONSTRATIONS

AND THE CURFEW IMPOSED ON THE NORTH WEST AND SOUTH WEST REGIONS

FROM FRIDAY, 29TH SEPTEMBER TO MONDAY, 2ND OCTOBER 2017

  1. The Anglophone Problem is now truly one that touches the hearts of very many people in all villages, towns and cities of the North West and South West Regions.
  2. ii. It is no longer just a problem of “a few disgruntled Anglophones at home and in the diaspora”, as some people have tried to play it down.
  3. iii. It is no longer just a problem of lawyers and teachers, as it seemed to be from the outset last year.

12. At the moment, the Anglophone Problem can no longer be taken lightly or ignored. It needs urgent attention, to avoid the growing genocide. People have lost loved ones to brutal killings and do not even know where some of their corpses are now. Every individual who is killed increases the number of aggrieved persons and families, resentment and anger, which are very difficult to address.

13. The heart of the matter is the ongoing Anglophone Problem which the Government has persistently failed to address adequately, resulting in deep and mounting resentment and bitterness among the population. Cosmetic changes which benefit only a few are not enough. The delay in addressing the problem has distanced many citizens of these two Regions from the rest of the country. The demonstrations of Friday, 22nd September 2017, across the two Regions should have opened the eyes of many, including the Government, to the scale of the problem. While the demonstrations were largely peaceful, there were a few incidents, provoked by either side that led to some deaths. We condemn all acts of violence by any one.

23. We once more call on the Government to release all those arrested in connection with this crisis. No meaningful dialogue can take place while those people remain in prison. All those killed during this curfew and the whole crisis, whose bodies have not been presented to their families, should be accounted for and their bodies returned to their families. The two Regions should be demilitarized as soon as possible and all forms of threats and intimidation on individuals and groups living in any part of the country should cease. All forms of manipulation and false propaganda especially through the media should stop. The Church advocates responsible journalism and the right use of the media. Irresponsible and misleading propaganda by individuals, groups or the State is unacceptable. We condemn all forms of threats, intimidation, wanton arrests, torture, and killings in the strongest terms.

24. We call for honest and meaningful dialogue with the right people to determine the nature and form of the state to be undertaken as soon as possible. We must refrain from divisive and poisonous behaviour and language. Utterances that are demeaning, insulting, or derogatory should be discouraged. As St. James says, the tongue must not set fire to the forest (cf. James 3:5). We call on all Christians to intensify their prayers for meaningful dialogue and for peace

 

 

 

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