Catholics ask Pope to make St. George Parish-Aweil diocese

Believers and Northern Bahr el Ghazal State government officials have requested Pope Francis to upgrade St. George Parish-Aweil Church to a diocese of Aweil.

The call comes during the visit of  the Vatican representative to South Sudan, Monsignor Ionut Paul, to Aweil Catholic Church on Tuesday.

Monsignor Paul came to assess the challenges and work being done by the catholic churches in the state.

St. George Paris in Aweil, which was established in 1950, has 43 centers with 258 Chapters and 554 catechists.

During a service at St. George Parish-Aweil, Silviciano Uchan said if Aweil was upgraded to be one of the dioceses, it would create vocational center for the youth who are in need of livelihood skills.

“I am sure it will enable us to have things that we cannot get like the vocational training centers and many other things that a diocese does to the youth,” Uchan said on behalf of the state government and faithfuls.

In response, Monsignor Paul promised to discussed the request with Pope Francis.

He urged Aweil citizens to be hopeful, saying he has seen the good faith and can be good if the church is upgraded.

“I must say I am very delighted by the way you take the word of God. I have seen how the Christians are ready to serve God and take good care of the diocese if it implemented in your state here,” he said. “So, I will pass your message and I want you to hope for a positive response.”

In February, Pope Francis visited South Sudan to celebrate mass at the John Garang Mausoleum in Juba. During his visit, Pope called for peace in South Sudan, in the final part of his Africa tour.