Paul Joseph Jean Cardinal Poupard Paul Joseph Jean Cardinal Poupard
Function:
President of Culture, Roman Curia
Title:
Cardinal Priest of S Prassede
Birthdate:
Aug 30, 1930
Country:
France
Elevated:
May 25, 1985
More information:
www.catholic-hierarchy.org
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English Cardinal Poupard on Enculturation
Sept 15, 2004
"The first time I went to Kinshasa, in Zaire [Congo], I was speaking to a group of Africans and after I'd finished, one man stood up and said, 'Well everything you say is fine, but you Europeans have brought us all of your customs and beliefs, they are not ours,' and everyone applauded.

(Source unknown) "I waited for a moment because the atmosphere was very tense and then I said, 'Dear friends, I ask your pardon because I do not have the good fortune to be Belgian,' and everyone relaxed with a laugh. Then I made my point, 'The Gospel always comes from the outside. To you, it came from Belgium. To me, a Frenchman, it came from Vienna. When you turn to real origins of the Gospel -- from where does it come? From God."

"St. Paul brought it to Rome and transformed Rome from a great pagan empire. And, this is cheeky of me to mention, but it wasn't so much the priests who brought the Gospel from the East, but in France it was above all the military men, like St. Martin, and merchants."

"Tomorrow," he added, "I told them, it will be you, Africans, who bring your enculturated Christianity to other countries."

In fact, this migration is already happening in Europe where African priests are working in parishes, filling the gap left by declining European vocations.
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