Discussion with Cardinal Souraphiel on the educational mission development projects in Ethiopia
A lunch was hosted at the Australian Catholic University, North Sydney campus, Thursday, May 24, gathering friends and supporters of Catholic Mission to share the life-giving work of missionaries in Ethiopia. A special guest from the Church of Ethiopia, Cardinal Berhaneyesus Demerew Souraphiel, was invited to share the real impact these projects have in Ethiopia.
Educational projects were the focus of the discussion, as the Ethiopian government has recently solicited the Church of Ethiopia to build more Catholic schools across the country.
“This is a gift we can give to society… our Catholic schools are open to all, and they concentrate on not only passing information and intellectual abilities but peaceful living and respectful relationship,” says Cardinal Souriaphiel.
Partnering with local communities and the Church of Ethiopia, Catholic Mission is currently engaged in four significant projects, including three projects directly linked to education.
In the city of Meki, a vocational center has been developed to empower and teach women skills so to foster independence in a country where 83% of women are illiterate. Since beginning the project, the Kidist Mariam Pastoral Center has supported over 8,000 women, teaching them practical skills to earn an independent income. This project is particularly important within the socio-economical context, where young women often feel compelled to seek work overseas, often facing exploitation.
“We believe, as the Catholic Church, that to transform society, education is the key. Educate people to give them the chance to go to school, rich and poor and middle class together so that they teach each other.” says Cardinal Souraphiel.
Catholic Mission is also partnering with Lideta Catholic Cathedral School to provide opportunities for the children of families who cannot afford school fees by offering scholarships. Through the generosity of our supporters, Catholic Mission is providing scholarships for 67 children.
“The school offers many benefits for students both in educational growth and in spiritual development – because of that, students from the Lideta Catholic Cathedral School consistently outperform and achieve with 100% pass rates to universities. Most of our former students are now serving their country in various professional positions,” says Cardinal Souraphiel.
Through these mission development projects, Catholic Mission aims to empower the future generation by giving them the keys to take control over their future. Please visit our website, catholicmission.org.au, to learn more about how you can help support Ethiopian youth to build brighter futures.