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Vocations flourish in the Pacific Islands

Two Rome-based news services have reported that years of missionary activity and the "high quality of formation offered" have produced a steady rise in the number of vocations to the priesthood and religious life in the Pacific.

Vidimus Dominum said last month that the Salesians in Samoa have 20 local candidates for their congregation in formation, which is significant given the size of the country.

Australia's Salesian Provincial - who administers the congregation's activities in Samoa, spoke to the news service of what he sees as a source of hope for the Church in the islands. Next month, the Salesians' Major Rector Fr Pascual Chavez will visit the Island on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Salesians' presence.

Earlier this year the congregation's reputation in Samoa and elsewhere was severely damaged by revelations of sex abuse by an Australian Salesian at Moamoa Theological College.

Meanwhile, the Fides news service of the Vatican's Office for the Propagation of the Faith reports this week on a "steady rise in the number vocations to the priesthood" in Tahiti.

Mission continues: vocations flourish in the Pacific Islands (Fides 1/9/04)
Samoa: Island Source of Vocations for Salesians

3 Sep 2004