The clergy has been asked to focus on bringing hope to the poor, the weak and the vulnerable in the society.

The Very Reverend Dr Francis Appiah-Kubi, President of the National Union of Ghana Diocesan Priests’ Associations (NUGDPA) of the Catholic Church, said assisting to improve the quality of life of the needy must become an urgent priority.

Speaking at the commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the Union in Kumasi, he urged priests to be passionate about serving humanity – leading the church to provide shelter and feeding the poor.

The four-day programme was held under the theme “The joys and challenges of the priesthood”.

It provided the platform for the priests to do soul-searching, identify the challenges and ways to strengthen their missionary work.

The event was also used to discuss national issues including education, health and youth development.

The Very Rev Father Dr Appiah-Kubi said, “it is regrettable that the human person, set by God at the pinnacle of creation, is unfortunately often discarded in favour of ephemeral things in our parishes, homes and communities”.

That, he said, was completely unacceptable and that the priests should lead efforts to soothe the suffering of the people.

He encouraged his colleague priests to serve their congregation with humility and integrity, adding that, they should become a good example to those they were leading.

He urged everybody to continue to pray for the nation’s peace, stability and progress.

Professor Nicholas N.N. Nsowah, Rector of the Kumasi Technical University, urged stronger partnership between the church and the state to transform the lives of the people.