BY TRACY-JO SMITH
AFRICAN missionaries have established a parish in the West Midlands.
The Apostles of Jesus, an African Religious Missionary Congregation, founded in 1968, has lent three of its brothers to the parish church of St Elizabeth, in Coventry, in the West Midlands.
The trio, Fr Aloysius Bukenya SJ, Fr John Wairagu and Fr Moses Pitya, has been administering to a flock of several hundred over the past year.
Fr Bukenya, 42, is currently awaiting the results of a PhD he has spent the past four years researching and writing. His research has focused on how pastoral care techniques practised in England could be applied to southern Uganda, affected by the AIDS pandemic crippling the continent of Africa.
Fr Bukenya explained: "The HIV/AIDS pandemic has caused many problems for teenage students who find themselves facing moral dilemmas . Teachers have to learn to use pastoral care principles in providing support for secondary school students many of whom have been orphaned by the plague of AIDS or whose siblings are dying of the disease. They need help from the educational system."
It is hoped that Fr Bukenya's thesis may serve as the basis of formulation of policy that will lead to specific policies in his home country. At this stage it is not known whether his Order will take over the running of other parishes.