AFRICA/MALAWI - Coronavirus puts the first Congress of Missionary Childhood at risk

Tuesday, 26 May 2020 coronavirus   children   missionary childhood   pontifical mission societies  

Lilongwe (Agenzia Fides) - The Pontifical Mission Societies of Malawi have temporarily suspended the preparatory meetings of the first Congress of Missionary Childhood scheduled from 12 to 17 August in the capital Lilongwe. In a note sent to Agenzia Fides, the PMS National Director of Malawi, Fr. Vincent Mwakhwawa said he will stick to Bishops' decisions after they meet at the end of June 2020 and to the emerging trends regarding the Coronavirus in the country.
"We have suspended meetings especially here in Lilongwe and at the National Direction to avoid gatherings and further spread of the virus", said Father Mwakhwawa.
The National Director also specified that the children are still preparing the activities they have been asked to do in their respective homes which should be presented during the Congress. In addition, he said he is confident that the situation will improve and hopes that the meeting will not be cancelled.
Among the topics on the agenda, the PMS have planned the discussion of various topical issues concerning the social and spiritual well-being of children, such as protection against physical and psychological abuse and their responsibility for protecting and managing the environment.
Over 1,000 representatives of children from all eight dioceses in the Country are expected to attend the Congress.
Malawi is one of the poorest Countries in the world, and for this reason the High Court has prohibited the Government from adopting the generalized closure to deal with the Coronavirus emergency. According to experts, the containment measures are likely to cause very serious consequences, worse than the pandemic itself, especially in economies where many live day by day. To date there are 102 confirmed cases including 33 recoveries and 5 deaths. (AP) (Agenzia Fides, 26/5/2020)