Benedict XVI met with the sick during his third day in Cameroon. Visiting the Cardinal Paul-Émile Léger Centre the Pope said he prays for the victims of violence, wars, AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis, the most life-threatening issues plaguing the African continent.
I know how actively engaged the Catholic Church in your country is in the fight against these terrible afflictions, and I encourage you to pursue this urgent task with great determination.
The Pope also thanked healthcare staff for their difficult job in a continent facing conflict and disease.
I am thinking especially of hospital staff, and all those who work in the field of health care. By accompanying those who suffer, through the care and attention you offer them, you accomplish an act of charity and love that God recognizes.
Benedict XVI reminded the sick of Simon of Cyrene, the man ordered by the Romans to help Jesus carry the cross. A native of Cyrene in Libya, he is considered to be the first African saintly Christian.
Can’t it be said that every African is in some sense a member of the family of Simon of Cyrene? Every African who suffers, indeed every person who suffers, helps Christ carry his Cross and climbs with him the path to Golgotha in order to one day rise again with him.
The Pope ended the visit to the Paul-Émile Léger Centre meeting those who are suffering the pains of Africa’s health problems. This was his last stop in Cameroon before flying to Angola the morning after.