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ITALY: Scholarships for African priests and seminarians to study in Rome

Year: 2014
Location: In the heart of Rome (in Piazza di Sant’Apollinare, near Piazza Navona and on Via dei Farnesi near the famous Palazzo Farnese)
Entity: Pontifical University of the Holy Cross
Cost: $185,500

The Pontifical University of the Holy Cross was born in Rome from the desire of St. Josemaría Escrivá , founder of Opus Dei, to promote a center of higher education for ecclesiastical studies that would be at the service of the whole Church. In 1984, his successor, Bishop Alvaro del Portillo, with the blessing of John Paul II, brought St. Josemaría’s dream to completion by inaugurating the Roman Academic Center, later know as the Pontifical Atheneum of the Holy Cross. In July 1998, Pope John Paul II granted it the title of University. It currently has Schools of Theology, Canon Law, Philosophy and Social Institutional Communications. Many bishops from around the world send priests and seminarians of their respective dioceses to Rome hoping to provide them with a deep scientific and spiritual formation. Thanks to the generosity of more than 25,000 donors from all over the world this Pontifical University already awards some scholarships each year. In 2012/2013 the University was able to distribute 216 scholarships to students from 41 countries and 153 dioceses. For the same academic year, it received 350 applications for scholarships. Unfortunately, the remaining 134 applications were rejected for lack of funds. In addition to scholarships , the University helps some needy students with tuition reduction. In 2012/2013, there were 108 students who benefitted by tuition reduction, many of them religious. In the past 5 years, the University has not been able to meet all scholarship needs and tuition reduction requests.

Direct Beneficiaries: Priests and seminarians from dioceses in Africa who cannot access ecclesiastical studies in Rome due to lack of funds . This year’s project goal is $185,500. This will provide 10 full scholarships or up to 25 partial scholarships.

Indirect Beneficiaries: Thousands of men, women and children living in dioceses throughout the African continent, in such places as Benin, Cameroon, Burkina-Faso, Ivory Coast, Congo, Liberia, Mozambique, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya and more, once their priests return from their studies.

The project respects the desire of donors to earmark scholarship funds for a particular country or region. Annual student costs are financed through full scholarships of $18,550 per person or by partial scholarships in the following amounts:

– Tuition fees $3,575
– Books and insurance $2,000
– Other expenses $1,300
– Food and residence $11,675


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