Loading
Argentinean priest receives award for work with the poor in Madagascar

.- The president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, Cardinal Renato Martino, has announced the recipients of the St. Matthew Foundation Awards for outstanding service in solidarity and social justice. One of the recipients this year is the Argentinean Fr. Pedro Opeka, who has worked with the poor in Madagascar since 1989.

The St. Matthew Foundation was created in memory of the late Vietnamese Cardinal Francois Xavier Van Thuan, who died in 2002, and whose cause for beatification is underway. The foundation promotes initiatives that encourage the presence of the Church in society through study and the spreading of the Church’s social doctrine.

Father Opeka’s life

 

The AICA news agency reports that Argentinean writer Jesus Silveyra, in his book “A Trip to Hope,” written after visiting Madagascar, says the following about Father Opeka:

He was ordained a priest in 1975 and returned to the African island to be pastor of the parish of Vagaindrano Mission in the southeastern jungle of the island.  For fifteen years he was devoted to the education of hundreds of young people. As he became accustomed to living among the poor and the needy, and because of the inhospitable nature of the region, he contracted various stomach ailments, as well as malaria.

In 1989, with the help of many of his former university students who had been taught by him, he founded the Akamasoa Humanitarian Association, which in Malgache means, “good friends,” in order to serve the marginalized and excluded.

Silveyra explains that after sixteen years of service, some 17,000 people live in the five villages created by the Association; 8,500 children attend its schools; and 3,500 people are employed by the Association.

“Each town has a food bank and has opened a hospital. More than 200,000 people (1.5% of the country’s entire population) have passed through its Support Center, where they have received temporary assistance and guidance in redirecting their lives,” Silveyra wrote.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
17

Liturgical Calendar

April 17, 2014

Holy Thursday

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Jn 13:1-15

Gospel
Date
04/17/14
04/16/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Ex 12:1-8, 11-14
Second Reading:: 1 Cor 11:23-26
Gospel:: Jn 13:1-15

Homily of the Day

Jn 13:1-15

Homily
Date
04/17/14
04/16/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: