“Pope Francis has reminded us often that a synodal Church is a Church characterized by listening: by reciprocal listening by which everyone – the faithful, bishops and the Bishop of Rome – learns from each other; and above all, by listening to the Holy Spirit all together.” Cardinal Mario Grech Secretary-General of the Synod of Bishops

The Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) invites you to a Zoom webinar on how synodality can be translated in local contexts. The focus of this synodal process is on how the Holy Spirit is inviting local Churches to journey together. The People of God are being invited to embrace the spirit of dialogue, participation, and co-responsibility so as to discern together how God is calling the Church to be in the third millennium. The General Secretariat for Synod of Bishops has urged groups to work together, through mutual listening and consultation of the People of God, in order to achieve the practice of synodality at all levels of the Church with everyone’s participation and contribution.

“The diversity of the local Churches and their context and culture bring different gifts to the whole, enriching the entire Body of Christ. This is key to understanding the Church’s path of synodality.” Vademecum, 4.2

Join us in this synodal conversation with Cardinal Mario Grech, who will speak on the experience of journeying together as a synodal Church in the diversity of the local Churches and their context and culture.

To register for this Zoom Webinar click {HERE}


1. Cardinal Mario Grech

Cardinal Mario Grech is the Secretary-General of the Synod of Bishops and Bishop emeritus of Gozo, Malta. Following his priestly ordination on 26 May 1984, he pursued higher studies in Rome, obtaining a licentiate in Utroque Iure at the Pontifical Lateran University and a doctorate in canon law at the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum). He held the offices of Judicial Vicar of the Diocese of Malta, member of the metropolitan tribunal of Malta, teacher of canon law in the seminary, and member of the College of Consultors, the Presbyteral Council, and other diocesan commissions. He served as Bishop of Gozo from 2005 to 2019, when he was appointed by Pope Francis as pro-Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops. Cardinal Grech received episcopal consecration on 22 January 2006. He is a member of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

2. Cardinal Philippe Ouédraogo Nakellentuba

Cardinal Philippe Ouédraogo Nakellentuba is the President of the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM). He is the Metropolitan Archbishop of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso since 2009. He was ordained a priest on 14 July 1973. In 1996, he was appointed by Blessed John Paul II as Bishop of Ouahigouya, Burkina Faso, and received episcopal consecration. He participated in the Third Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops (October 2014) on The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization and in the Fourteenth Ordinary General Assembly on The Vocation and Mission of the Family in the Church and Contemporary World (October 2015). He is a member of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue.

3. Rev. Terwase Henry Akaabiam

Rev. Terwase Henry Akaabiam is a diocesan priest from the Gboko Diocese of Benue State, Nigeria. He was ordained in 1983 and has served in different places. He is on a second missionary journey in Accra, Ghana as the Secretary-General of the SECAM Secretariat.

4. Rev. Anthony Makunde

Rev. Anthony Makunde is a diocesan priest from the Archdiocese of Mbeya, Tanzania. He is currently the Secretary-General of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA), which has its Secretariat in Nairobi, Kenya.

5. Dominique Yon

Dominique Yon is the Youth Coordinator for the Archdiocese of Cape Town, South Africa, and a member of the Vatican International Youth Advisory Body. She is a teacher at Christian Brothers College in Parklands, Cape Town.

6. Dr. Philippe Abraham Birane Tine

Dr. Philippe Abraham Birane Tine is a research professor at the Department of Languages and Ancient Civilisations of the Cheikh Anta Diop University of Dakar and at the St. Augustine Centre of Philosophy and Theology of Dakar, Senegal. He is also the President of the National Council of the Laity of Senegal and Secretary-General of the Regional Council of the Laity of West Africa.

7. Sr. Wilhelmina Uhai Tunu, LSOSF

Sr. Wilhelmina Uhai Tunu, LSOSF is a Tanzanian from the Institute of the Little Sisters of St. Francis. She serves as the Deputy Secretary-General of the Association of Consecrated Women in Eastern and Central Africa (ACWECA) and Regional Coordinator of Strengthening the Capacity of Religious Women in the Early Childhood Development Program of ACWECA. She is an Adjunct Lecturer at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) and Tangaza University College in Nairobi, Kenya.

The discussion will be available in English and French.

Click here to register for the event

The African Synodality Initiative is providing resources that will enable the local churches in Africa to engage fruitfully and constructively in this synodal process. See links below.

Watch our video on African Bishops speaking about synodality

Watch an African Message of Synodality from African Bishops