Seventh Plenary Assembly of the Catholic Bible Federation

Seventh Plenary Assembly of the Catholic Bible Federation Dar es Salaam (Tanzania). From June 24-August 3 the Catholic Bible Federation met to discuss the theme: “The Word of God, source of reconciliation, justice and peace.”  230 experts in biblical ministry came from more than 80 countries of the world for the Plenary Session.  In the 40 years of its existence, this is the first time that this meeting has taken place in Africa where it was greatly noticed.  This was also emphasized by our Sisters of the communities present on the African Continent.
Every six years the 320 member organizations of the Catholic Bible Federation gather in plenary assembly.  This regular meeting offers a place where the experts and workers in biblical ministry of the world can meet and share their points of view.
The theme of the assembly was: “The Word of God, source of reconciliation justice and peace, and it was accompanied by the biblical icon: “We are ambassadors for Christ” (2 Cor 5, 19-20).
The theme expressed well the particular context of Africa with its challenges.  The central dimensions of Christian behavior are being ready to reconcile, to desire justice and to aspire to peace.  At the same time, there is certainly a bond with the Second Synod of African Bishops that will take place in 2009 around the theme: “The Church in Africa at the service of reconciliation, justice and peace.”
The work of the Assembly began with a sociological analysis of the present reality in different parts of the world from the point of view of society, politics and Church.  Beginning from this basis, ways and concrete steps were drawn up in view of an active commitment, in the light of the Bible in favor of reconciliation, justice and peace.  This brought out the role that the Bible can play in this process as bearer of a Word of God full of life and hope.
Presently, the Catholic Bible Federation gathers a level of 328 international organizations and institutions active in the field of biblical translation, of biblical work and of biblical science.  All feel responsible for the mission that has been conferred on them by Vatican Council II: “To allow for the great number of people an approach that takes into account their life and the context that respects different cultures and different approaches to hermeneutics.

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