Every generation is confronted with a problem that defines its time and marked by personalities who shape its history. Pope John Paul II was one of such people as he helped in shaping the history of his time and impacting on the lives of many. It will not be out of place if historians one day refer to his time as the Pope John Paul II era. After all, many Christians today are witnesses to how influential he was and how he touched them in a special way.
It was 11:12am on Friday, April 8, 2011, at the Bambui Major Seminary and lectures had just resumed after break. The weather was serene and none could suspect Holy Mother Church had something in store for the Church that is in Bamenda Archdiocese.
Shortly after he was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Bamenda Archdiocese, L'Effort Camerounais caught up with Rev. Agapitus Nfon, who spared a few minutes from his tight schedule as we found him buried in work at the Bambui Major Seminary where he is still Rector: Excerpts:
Fr. Agapitus Nfon and parents during first Mass in Djottin
Kumbo Diocese has been celebrating the Holy See's appointment of Rev. Fr. Agapitus Nfon as Auxiliary Bishop of Bamenda. In his native Djottin village celebrations were reported among family members, friends and the local Church when the announcement came over the State radio. Amidst what many consider a blessing to the Church in Kumbo, L'Effort Camerounais talked to the newly appointed Auxiliary Bishop's mother, Mama Odilia Kininla Nfon at her Kinegti Residence in Djottin. Among other things, she advises the auxiliary Bishop to remain steadfast to his priestly vows. Excerpts:
Pope John Paul II, who died on April 2, 2005, will be beatified on May 1, Feast of Divine Mercy. The Church that is in Cameroon is looking forward to this event with great expectation as Pope John Paul II shared a special relationship with Cameroon. He visited Cameroon twice during his Pontificate- precisely in 1985 and 1995. His second visit culminated in the proclamation of the historic Post Synodal Apostolic Exhortation-Ecclesia In Africa. What do some Ecclesial authorities and Catholic Christians in Cameroon remember most about Pope John Paul II's Papacy? Also take a cursory look at some of his declarations during his 1995 Pastoral Visit to Cameroon.
News of the beatification of Pope John Paul II has brought joy to thousands of Catholics and non-Catholics the world over. Preparations are intensifying in the Roman city for the ceremony, on May 1, 2011, Feast of Divine Mercy. The Mass will begin at 10 am at St Peter's Square. Pope Benedict XVI will preside at the Mass expected to draw over 300.000 people.
It gives me great satisfaction to be back again on African soil in your beautiful country of Cameroon. (---) I would like to address a warm greetings to all the people of Cameroon and to tell them of my esteem and my best wishes for the nation's prosperity and for the human and spiritual advancement of all in harmony and peace.
Shortly after he was elected Pope, John Paul II appointed Rev. Christian Tumi Bishop of Yagoua. Years later he created him Cardinal and sent him on mission to several important Church events as his personal representative. As Christian Cardinal Tumi himself says, if there is anyone who knows Pope John Paul II well in Cameroon, he should be the one. Ahead of Pope John Paul II's beatification on May 1, L'Effort Camerounais talked to Cardinal Tumi, who takes an incisive retrospective view at John Paul II's Pontificate. Excerpts:
Lucas Wirba Nyuydine I remember Pope John Paul II as a pious servant of God. He lived a simple and prayerful life. His travels worldwide and ability to reach out to Catholics and non Catholics struck me. He even forgave the man who attempted to kill him. He was one of the first popes to get into synagogues and mosques. He led a very simple life till death as could be seen in his choice of coffin which was made of pine. If we emulate his life, we shall grow spiritually and be closer to God.