1. The celebration of the Golden Jubilee (29 July 1969 – 29 July 2019) of the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM), offers the Church in Africa and Madagascar a unique opportunity to be grateful to God for his countless blessings to the Church-Family of God in Africa, to the entire continent, and especially for these past fifty years of its creation. At the end of this jubilee celebration, and with profound gratitude to God, we wish to intensively engage ourselves in our desire to know Christ more deeply and to follow him more closely in order to receive from him the fullness of life that he brought to humanity (cf. Jn 10:10). Strengthened by the Word of God and the Eucharist, and guided by the Holy Spirit, who leads us to “the whole truth” (Jn 16:13), we commit ourselves to return to our baptismal roots in Christ and his gospel; to deepen the knowledge of our profession of faith; to live up to our baptismal promises in all sectors of life; and to seek new strength and zeal for the mission; in order to build, for all citizens, a new Africa centred on God.
2. As we progress with zeal and in the spirit of jubilee, we wish to always emphasize our dependency on God and to repent from all failures, so as to conform ourselves to the new covenant in Christ and to express our gratitude to God for his continued presence in our daily lives as individuals and as a Church, Family of God. More importantly, we commit ourselves to live and work together as Family of God, with the Eucharist and the word of God as our source of life and strength, so as to become visible and credible signs in Africa of the “kingdom of truth and life”, “of holiness and grace”, and “of justice, love and peace.”1 We put this initiative of the Golden Jubilee of SECAM in the overall context of the Great Jubilee of our Lord Jesus Christ, calling to mind the invitation of St John Paul II, in Novo Millennio Ineunte, to all the people of God to reflect on their experiences of the Great Jubilee, and out of this.