The Solomon Islands are an island group in the South Pacific, some 450 miles east of Papua New Guinea and some 1,250 miles to the northeast of Australia. Once its inhabitants were fierce headhunters, but today almost all of them are Christians. Most belong to various Protestant communities, but some 20% are Catholics.
The Catholic Diocese of Gizo is based in the city of Gizo, the capital of the Western Province that is situated on the island of Ghizo. The Diocese also covers more than 40 other islands within a radius of roughly 200 miles.
One of the principal concerns for Bishop Luciano Capelli is the formation of his priests, for he has just 14 priests to minister to some 11,000 Catholic faithful who are scattered widely and thinly over so many different islands. Only two of these 14 priests are from the diocese itself, the remainder being “on loan,” as the bishop puts it.
There is some reason for hope, for this year two of his seminarians were ordained to the diaconate, and altogether there are 12 young men training for the priesthood. In addition, there are a number of young men who are seriously considering entering the seminary. This encouraging news is the fruit of the vocations apostolate that Bishop Capelli himself has fostered.
The bishop is struggling to fund the training of these seminarians, and he has turned to ACN for help. We are proposing to give $14,300 to support the training of these future priests
“Thank you for understanding that we, too, are part of the Church in Need,” he writes to us.
Will you give to help Bishop Capelli fund the training of these seminarians who will serve the Catholic faithful on the Solomon Islands? We are sure he and these future priests will remember you in their grateful prayers.
Aid to the Church in Need commits to invest your funds where they will have the greatest impact for the Church that we serve. Funds donated to Aid to the Church in Need’s projects will be used towards the greatest need in our programs to help keep the Faith alive.