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Ioannes Paulus PP. II
Ecclesia in Africa

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  • CHAPTER I
      • 17
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17. During my Pastoral Visits in Africa, I frequently referred to the Special Assembly for Africa and to the principal aims for which it had been convoked. When I took part for the first time on African soil at a meeting of the Council of the Synod, I did not fail to emphasize my conviction that a Synodal Assembly cannot be reduced to a consultation on practical matters. Its true raison d'être is the fact that the Church can move forward only by strengthening communion among her members, beginning with her Pastors.18

Every Synodal Assembly manifests and develops solidarity between the heads of particular Churches in carrying out their mission beyond the boundaries of their respective Dioceses. The Second Vatican Council taught: "As lawful Successors of the Apostles and as members of the Episcopal College, Bishops should always realize that they are linked one to the other, and should show concern for all the Churches. For by divine institution and the requirement of their apostolic office, each one in concert with his fellow Bishops is responsible for the Church".19




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