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Central Africa Province

Central Africa Province (ACE)

The ACE Jesuit Province, which is confined to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), is home to a leading AJAN project: Parlons-SIDA (Let’s talk about AIDS) in Kisangani. The parish-based project offers holistic and personalised care to people with HIV, their families and orphans, and conducts awareness activities.

Other Jesuit parishes in DRC have active AIDS ministry. At the parish of St Pierre Claver in Bukavu, also in eastern DRC, a pastoral and psychosocial ministry has been developed for people with HIV, which includes a popular weekly Mass tailored for the needs of those who are sick.

In Kikwit, a large town in the west, the Foyer Louis de Gonzague (Aloysius Gonzaga Forum) organises AIDS awareness sessions through centres of the Sacré-Coeur Parish, and supports people with HIV in partnership with an association.

These programmes are part of a growing range of AIDS ministry in the ACE Province. There are nearly 250 Jesuits in DRC and initiatives unfold in the many settings where they are at work. Other initiatives worthy of note include those under way in Jesuit high schools in Kinshasa and Kikwit, and the Stop-SIDA group of the Christian Life Community (CLC) in Kinshasa, which carries out its care and prevention mission in three poor neighourhoods of the capital.

DRC is home to one of the Jesuit colleges of formation, the faculty of philosophy of St Pierre Canisius. This college has an AJAN-Canisius group of young Jesuit students who devote some of their time to visiting people with HIV in the neighbourhood and to scholarly reflection about AIDS.