(Bishop of Bujumbura, Burundi)
The Catholic school retains the attention in the Instrumentum Laboris. But the Church cannot be limited to only this. She is concerned about schools in general and must always be vigilant that this necessary service for youth be true, efficient and just.
The Church is called upon, before others, to embrace youth in the name of Christ. The urgency and the presence of concerns for the school in the Church are especially felt when one thinks about the attitude that Christ asks of his disciples as concerning children and the young of all sorts: "Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me" (Mt. 18,5). School is the privileged milieu of this reception becoming the development and the blossoming of youths.
School is a fundamental right of the child and its parents. School is the duty of the parents, of society and of the state toward the child. The Synodal Fathers must become the voice of those without a voice so that schooling no longer is a privilege of the rich, of the parvenu or of bureaucrats. The greatness and the well-being of a people is measured by its efforts to educate its young, while guaranteeing a future which will be more in line with the just and legitimate attentions of the new generation.
Ecclesial solidarity and international co-operation must help the Churches and the African countries to accomplish this.
Without schooling, Africa will never be able to overcome poverty, nor solidly found hopes for a better tomorrow.
The task of the school returns essentially to the parish and to the lay faithful, whose witness and presence on behalf of a just education are necessary. The call on behalf of schooling and education cannot be adjourned. Let us accept our responsibilities.