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Rome Reports

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South Sudan's first seminarian to study at Rome's Pontifical University of the Holy Cross

Tipoi Mark Henry Zomani has become a trailblazer of sorts for the more than 320 seminarians in his home diocese of Tombura-Yambio in South Sudan. He has been in Rome for the last few years, studying.

Seminarian from Tombura-Yambio (South Sudan)
“When I came here, there was nobody in my diocese, nobody from my country. I was the first in the history of the college from South Sudan, and I was also the first to go to the university where I am studying, which is the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross.”

Zomani recalls the important work the seminarians in his home diocese do to keep the faith alive in remote places.

Seminarian from Tombura-Yambio (South Sudan)
“Sometimes we take time to go and teach them catechism... helping them, teaching them about social life, how to live in the community peacefully, all these kinds of things. And also helping them with manual work. We go to garden together with them, to help them, to show them what we know, what we learn from the seminary.”

Zomani sees the seminary as an opportunity for young men to grow spiritually and intellectually and to help give South Sudan a new image: from a country associated with war and poverty to one associated with peace.

Seminarian from Tombura-Yambio (South Sudan)
“It is a very important moment for us as young people of South Sudan, to concentrate on our studies very well so that when we go out, like when we are doing pastoral work, we're helping people to understand the importance of peace in a country, especially a young nation like South Sudan.”

Once he completes his studies in Rome, Zomani intends to return to South Sudan to continue serving the Church there.