WHO WE SERVE

AFRICA


Currently, 586 Divine Word Missionaries serve in 17 African countries, running schools, ministering to refugees, offering the sacraments in parishes and providing for the poor and the hungry. The Divine Word presence in this populous, youthful, war-torn continent focuses on evangelization, education and the promotion of a culture of life and peace.

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"OUR GOD IS A GOD OF RELATIONSHIPS. 
GOD WANTS US TO BE  INVOLVED 
WITH EACH OTHER."

− FR. JEROME MARQUEZ SVD

17

Countries are being
served in Africa

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South Sudan

South Sudan

The Church is one of the few institutions in South Sudan that has the credibility, capacity and presence to effectively address the plight of this nation torn by civil war. Every day between 2,000 and 3,000 people flee South Sudan for refugee reception centers in Uganda. After initial setbacks in the refugee settlements, people are slowly getting used to the situation. As long as the South Sudanese refugees live in the various refugee settlements in Uganda, Divine Word Missionaries will remain there to care for their pastoral and spiritual needs.
Chad

Chad

Primary evangelization remains the driving force behind Divine Word Missionaries’ continued presence in this country. This is a challenging missionary context: the dialogue partners are Muslims and members of various Christian churches. All the Catholic bishops in Chad are eager to have the Divine Word Missionary presence working in their dioceses and sharing the missionary charism.

Kenya

Kenya

Divine Word Missionaries are at work across 12 parishes between Kenya and Tanzania. Ethnic tension and HIV/AIDS, as well as a lack of access to health services and clean drinking water, all weigh on the people of these countries. However, the Catholic faith is alive and flourishing in Kenya in particular. Our missionaries focus their efforts on building schools and medical clinics and on evangelization and formation.

South Africa

South Africa

Divine Word Missionaries in Botswana and South Africa are focused on the poorest of the poor providing pastoral care by visiting families and ministering to Christian communities and prayer groups. Evangelization, formation and education are also top priorities. We operate two colleges and many mission schools. These two southern African nations struggle with high rates of poverty, HIV/AIDS, single-mother families and high unemployment. Throughout Botswana and South Africa, Divine Word Missionaries help the marginalized, shelter refugees and provide food, clothing and basic needs.

Botswana

Botswana

Divine Word Missionaries in Botswana and South Africa are focused on the poorest of the poor providing pastoral care by visiting families and ministering to Christian communities and prayer groups. Evangelization, formation and education are also top priorities. We operate two colleges and many mission schools. These two southern African nations struggle with high rates of poverty, HIV/AIDS, single-mother families and high unemployment. Throughout Botswana and South Africa, Divine Word Missionaries help the marginalized, shelter refugees and provide food, clothing and basic needs.

Mozambique

Mozambique

For almost 100 years, Divine Word Missionaries were repeatedly denied re-entry to this former Portuguese colony after the initial attempt in 1911. Only in 1997, five years after the peace accords were signed, did four members of our Society return to the country. Our missionaries in the region give special attention to support of the family and the formation of youth through education and catechesis.

Tanzania

Tanzania

Divine Word Missionaries are at work across 12 parishes between Kenya and Tanzania. Ethnic tension, HIV/AIDS, lack of access to health services and clean drinking water all weigh on the people of these countries. Our missionaries focus their efforts on building schools and medical clinics and on evangelization and formation.

The Democratic Republic of Congo

The Democratic Republic of Congo

Amidst the social, economic and political crises of of this country, Divine Word Missionaries struggle against AIDS, sexual violence, corruption, poverty and illiteracy. Through ministry to the millions of refugees in this country, service in nine parishes and the operation of several centers of learning and formation, Divine Word Missionaries are proclaiming the good news of the Gospel. Our missionaries also operate a publishing house here  to publish and distribute the Bible and other spiritual books in the many African languages.

Angola

Angola

Divine Word Missionaries bring the Gospel to the people of Angola in 12 impoverished parishes across eight dioceses. Ethnic clashes and the legacy of civil war with Portugal have left many Angolans in dehumanizing poverty. Our missionaries operate schools and medical clinics. Mobile teams of missionaries spend their nights rescuing abandoned children from the streets, bringing the children to shelters where they are given food and vocational training.

Zambia

Zambia

The population of Zambia is 17 million, composed of more than 70 Bantu-speaking ethnic groups. Among these, 95.5% are Christians (Catholics being 20.2%), Muslims 1%, Hindus, Bahai, Buddhists 1.7%, and those who do not have any religious affiliation are 1.8% of the Population. The main ministries of our Zambia mission are parish pastoral, formation, education, social and prison. Though these are areas where other religious congregations are also involved, confreres carry out these ministries knowing that it is special to the SVD.

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe

In Zimbabwe, the prevalence of HIV/AIDS has dropped from 30 percent in 1997 to 13 percent today. Women are much more likely to be infected than men. Divine Word Missionaries came to Zimbabwe in 1987 in the Matebeleland area of the Bulawayo Archdiocese. We now have 23 missionaries directly involved in evangelization through parish and mission work. Most of these missionaries work in parishes on the periphery of the country and are engaged in primary evangelization and social work.

Benin

Benin

Divine Word Missionaries arrived in Benin in 1987. Of the 10 dioceses in Benin, we are present in two located in the north. All the religious in the dioceses are working hard at evangelization as their essential pastoral task. With our missionary charism, our Society is much welcomed by the local Church and fits beautifully into the existing pastoral framework.

Liberia

Liberia

Liberia struggles with high rates of poverty and unemployment. The country is recovering from the impact of a bloody civil war in the 1990s and the devastation of an Ebola outbreak in 2014. Divine Word Missionaries are focused on building schools, ministering to lepers and street children, and establishing centers where lay people can be trained as catechists and marriage counselors.

Togo

Togo

Divine Word Missionaries returned to Togo in 1974. Of the seven dioceses in Togo, we are present in five. All the religious in the dioceses are working hard at evangelization as their essential pastoral task. With our missionary charism, our Society is much welcomed by the local Church and fits beautifully into the existing pastoral framework.

Ghana

Ghana

Ghana struggles with high rates of poverty and unemployment. Divine Word Missionaries are focused on building schools, ministering to lepers and street children, and establishing centers where lay people can be trained as catechists and marriage counselors.

Madagascar

Madagascar

Most of Divine Word Missionaries here work in parishes. Our missionaries are active in seven parishes and hundreds of mission stations. In some of these parishes and mission stations, missionaries help to develop mission schools. Poverty is getting worse, yet the government provides little palpable support to help the people. Our task is to promote peace and order in the communities through dialogue and formation, particularly in promulgating a new evangelization and promoting a culture of life.

Uganda

Uganda

In September 2016 a study was conducted about the possibility of Divine Word Missionaries taking up work in Uganda among the South Sudanese refugees. Every day between 2,000 and 3,000 new refugees continue to arrive at the various refugee reception centers in Uganda. Although the refugees in these settlements lack many things in life, they enjoy basic freedom. They can sleep peacefully without the sound of gunfire. They get their food rations, and their children receive the much-needed basic education and medical services.

 

As long as the South Sudanese refugees live in the various refugee settlements in Uganda, Divine Word Missionaries under the South Sudan Mission will remain here to care for their pastoral and spiritual needs.

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