+94 11 295 8542

New Claretian Presence-Mission in South Sudan

Latest News

In line with the Congregation’s dream to go to the peripheries (QC 43), on the 8th of June 2024, on the Feast Day of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, a new Claretian presence was started in South Sudan, the youngest country in the world since its independence from Sudan in 2011. St. Joseph Vaz Independent Delegation – Sri Lanka has assumed the responsibility for the new mission in the Diocese of Malakal, in the Upper Nile State, in the northern region of South Sudan.

The official inauguration of the new mission took place during a Mass presided by the bishop of Malakal the Most Rev. Stephen Nyodho Ador Majwok. He handed over the pastoral and administrative responsibilities of St. Stephen’s Parish, Kodok to the Claretian Missionaries in the presence of St. Joseph Vaz Independent Delegation’s Major Superior Fr. Joseph Jeyaseelan, CMF and the delegate of the Superior General, the Major Superior of St. Charles Lwanga Independent Delegation Fr. Joy Mampillikunnel, CMF. Fr. Milfer Vaz, CMF was appointed as the Parish Priest while Fr. Gunaseelan Selexon, CMF was appointed as the Assistant Parish Priest.

During the Mass, the community was officially constituted as a Residence with Fr. Milfer as the Delegate Superior and Fr. Selexon as the Econome. Present on the occasion was also Fr. Christy John, CMF of St. Joseph Vaz Independent Delegation who for the last five years has been working in the inter-congregational project of the USG-UISG, called Solidarity with South Sudan.

June 8th was a day of rejoicing for the entire village of Kodok which has a strong Catholic population. The people offered a very warm welcome to the missionaries with their rich traditional singing, dance and other customs. The parish of Kodok has 6 substations and a school with over 1,000 children.   

In the Message written for the inauguration of the new mission in South Sudan, Superior General Fr. Mathew Vattamattam, CMF wrote the following: “I am glad that in the 175th year of our Foundation, we begin this mission moved by the Spirit… The 175 years of our existence is a story of many missionaries who went with joy and zeal to new missionary frontiers. The mission in South Suan is a fitting tribute to St. Anthony Mary Claret and the missionaries who gave their lives to proclaim the Gospel of joy.”

Although several Claretians have worked in the past in the Solidarity with South Sudan project – Fr. Callistus Joseph, CMF (Germany), Fr. Alberto Ruiz, CMF (USA-Canada), Fr. Roland Onuekwusi, CMF (West Nigeria), and Fr. Jose Pitchai, CMF (Chennai), this is the first time, we have started a Claretian community in South Sudan.

The country has seven catholic dioceses. Malakal is geographically the largest diocese covering a land area of 238,000 square kilometers. It has about 400,000 Catholics spread in 23 parishes.

Through a message, warmly welcoming the Claretian missionaries in Kodok to the African continent, ACLA President and Major Superior of Cameroon Independent Delegation, Fr. Jude Thaddeus, CMF, writes thus: “Choosing Kodok in the Diocese of Malakal, located in the northern part of South Sudan, is a timely response to Pope Francis’s invitation to go to the peripheries. We are aware of the challenges that South Sudan faces, but we know that your faith, compassion, and commitment will see you through.”

May Our Blessed Mother, the Holy Founder, and the brother martyrs accompany our missionaries in Kodok through their powerful intercessions.

Popular Post
St. Joseph Vaz Independent Delegation – Sri Lanka has a new priest! Deacon Pakiyanathan…

Subscribe Us

Subscribe us and get latest news and upcoming events.
*Never share your email with others.
Join Us

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam laboris.