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Africa’s Women’s Day – 31 July

About Africa’s Women Day

Africa’s Women’s Day is observed annually across the continent on 31 July and is a day earmarked to recognise and affirm the role of women’s organising in achieving the political freedom of Africa and advancing the social and economic status of women on the continent.

Africa’s Women’s Day was proclaimed as a day to be commemorated during the first conference of the Pan-African Women’s Organization (PAWO) which was held in July 1962 in Dar-es-Salaam Tanganyika (now known as Tanzania).

Africa’s Women’s Day offers a national, continental and global opportunity to recall and affirm the significant role of African women in the evolution of a strong Pan-African identity, with shared values, objectives and vision for the future, as well as women being key contributors towards achieving Africa’s inclusive growth and sustainable development agenda anchored in the AU vision of an integrated prosperous and peaceful Africa.


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Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, Year C – 2022

Among us, people, signs are very much part of our interaction.
A wink, a scowl, a frown, a shaking of the head – all of these give a message.
But to be truly meaningful, such signs need to be interpreted.
If not, then the message can be either lost or misunderstood.

Today’s gospel text, on the Feast of Jesus’ Baptism (Luke 3:15-16,21-22), offers us many signs indeed.
People coming to John to be baptized is the sign of their repentance from their sins.
John speaks of the untying the sandal straps; this was a sign of unworthiness as it referred to the work of a slave.
The fire mentioned by John is a sign of purification.
The dove descending from above is interpreted as the sign of God’s Spirit.

But no matter how meaningful these signs may appear, they are weak and poor in comparison to THE SIGN not yet mentioned.
This exceptional SIGN is that of Jesus himself being baptized.

He goes down into the water, just like everyone else.
Even when John the Baptist objects, Jesus insists to be treated like all others (Matthew 3:3-15).
What does this say?
What does it mean?

During the Christmas season just ended, we have remembered the name given to Jesus: God-with-us.
Jesus is indeed God-with us, but today, we are given to understand that Jesus is also one-of us.
And the author of the letter to the Hebrews dares to say that Jesus was

“in every way, just as we are – yet he did not sin” (Hebrews 4:21).

A close proximity, you may think.
More still: an amazing identity – this is the true meaning of the Incarnation.
Born like all of us, he will die as we will all do, to make us what he is:
true children of God!

Already in the 2nd century, Saint Irenaeus was teaching this extraordinary truth to the early Christians:
“The Son of God became the Son of man so that man might become a son of God”.

Ours is also an amazing identity!


Note: Another reflection is available on a different theme in French at:


Source: Image: Pinterest

Feast of Pentecost, Year B – 2021

There are things and situations which somehow leave us… uncertain.
We look at the different angles of a reality and we are perplexed…
We wonder whether we are right in our appraisal of a given situation.

Our identity could be one of them, who we really are.
Of course, we know who we are as human beings –
our personality, our qualities, our past experiences, our strengths and weaknesses,
our desires and hopes, our successes and failures, etc.

But what about our identity as… Christians?
Are we truly aware of what this means?
Are we conscious of what it entails, all the richness of this condition?
We recognize ourselves as followers of Christ, yes, members of the Church, yes.

Todays’ celebration, the feast of the Holy Trinity, tells us of the identity of… God.
But it also the reminds us of a wonderful aspect of our own identity as Christians.

Writing to the first Christians of Rome, the apostle Paul tells them (2nd reading: Rom.8:14-17):

“The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.”
Not only does our spirit tells us but God’s Spirit himself confirms this truth.
This text removes any doubt which we may have about who we are –
nothing less than God’s own children.

We have been “adopted” says Paul et he adds that we are:

“heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.”
It is truly wonderful, it is absolutely astonishing!
Why do we not dare to believe in this God
and in the divinely transformed people that he has made us to be?!
Note: Another reflection on a different theme is available in French at:


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