The Diocese of Dapaong in Togo, a West African country with a diverse population of 6.3 million, is in one of the poorest regions of the country. The region is in the far north of the country, bordering the Sahel zone, and the desert is encroaching ever further into this area, making agriculture and the survival of the people increasingly difficult. Over 80% of the people live on less than $16 a month, and 13% of them live on less than $11.
The population of the region is a very youthful one, however, with 70% aged under 21. Many are drawn to Christianity and are seeking baptism. The Good News of Christ is attracting a great many former adherents of traditional African religions. In the Parish of Saint Paul in Dapaong alone there are no fewer than 1,000 catechumens: the catechism classes are filled to overflowing with young people and adults!
The parish priest, Father Joan Sole Ribas is delighted at the blossoming life of his parish, but at the same time it is a huge challenge for him to cope with instructing so many catechumens. There are simply no premises available for teaching them.
Now he wants to build three classrooms for this catechetical work. These classrooms will also serve as evening schools for teaching literacy to adults and young people, and as a musical school as well. The parish can just about cover the cost of one such classroom, but they need help for the other two. We have promised him $16,300.
Will you help us fulfill this promise to Father Ribas so that he can continue to bring the Gospel to the people of this region of Togo that is poor but flourishing in faith?
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