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Friars Aim to Start a Community in Khartoum

ROME – An international group of four friars is preparing to establish a new Franciscan presence in Khartoum, capital of Sudan.

Two friars, Croatian Leopold Mici, OFM, and Filipino Melito Pinili, OFM, are studying Arabic at the Dar Comboni Institute in Cairo, Egypt. Peter Tindo, OFM, and John Lemi, OFM, both Sudanese, are finishing specialized studies in Rome.

The members of the nascent fraternity of Sudan met on Jan. 4-5 at the College of Grottaferrata, near Rome, where they received the support of Bernardo Amaral, OFM, General Definitor for Africa, and Vincenzo Brocanelli, OFM, General Moderator for the missions.

The meeting was also attended by José Rodríguez Carballo, OFM, the General Minister, who offered guidelines for the new Franciscan presence in Sudan.

Planned for the two years of preparation are contacts with the local Church in Khartoum, visits and additional formation meetings. The Franciscans hope to open their community in Sudan in October 2007.

In Sudan, the Arab-Muslim population predominates in the North. Christians and followers of traditional religions prevail in the South.

Reprinted from Zenit.org.