October 5th to October 30th 2015




Fidelity to Christ compels us “to proclaim the gospel to all nations” (Matt. 28:19). In a multicultural country like Canada, proclaiming the gospel requires intercultural awareness and dialogue which are vital aspects of everyday life. The Enculturation Program for International Priests provides international priests and their parishioners with the tools to serve in a culturally sensitive manner.

The Enculturation Program for International Priests in Western Canada is designed to strengthen the ministry of priests who’s native culture is not Canadian. The program consists of three interconnected modules which will provide a broad base of support for the international priest and the parish he is serving. The optimal conditions for an international priest successful ministry are strengthened by the support of a mentor, their participation in training module and intercultural awareness learning opportunities for parishioners.


The Western Conference of Catholic Bishops wanted a program for international priests that come to Canada to serve in our Roman Catholic communities.  The EPIPWC is a joint effort between Newman Theological College and Catholic Social Services.


Contact Doreen Bloos at 780.392.2450 ext. 5225 or email




  • sacramental preparation
  • preaching
  • accent clarity
  • building healthy relationships in the parish
  • youth ministry
  • ecumenism… and more!


  • cross-cultural communication
  • culture, cultural differences, culture shock
  • education system
  • health system
  • history, geography and weather
  • legal system
  • multiculturalism… and more!

Through a process of providing information, having discussions, answering questions and taking field trips, different topics are addressed such as: Aboriginal culture, Canadian families and gender roles, political system, economy & social issues, racism & discrimination, youth and youth culture, to name a few.

2013 Enculturation Group












  • A total of one hundred and sixty-six (166) international priests have participated in the seven Enculturation Programs held in 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.
  • The participants originated from 16 different countries (India, Nigeria, Philippines, Poland, Ghana, Guatemala, Congo, Korea, Brazil, Sierra Leone, Columbia, Sri Lanka, African Republic, Cote D’Ivoire, Cameroon & Pakistan).
  • The priests came to serve in 18 dioceses (or offices) from Manitoba (Winnipeg, St. Boniface, Keewatin Le Pas & a Manitoba wide office), Saskatchewan (Regina, Saskatoon, Prince Albert), Alberta (Edmonton, St. Paul, Calgary, Grouard McLennan), British Columbia (Victoria, Prince George, Vancouver, Nelson), the Yukon (Whitehorse), the Northwest Territories (Mackenzie-Fort Smith) and Ontario (Toronto).



  • “It helps broaden and expands my horizon in understanding my vocation and mission. It helps me to be effective in my ministry. It helps me to understand and be flexible to other people in different cultures.”
  • "Knowledge about Canada history, culture, and all the support I needed to be integrated to Canadian culture before passing on God’s message. As pastor in Canada I have to be patient, tolerant, listener, friend maker, good shepherd like Christ. I learned how to approach First Nations people and how to build up a relationship with them.”
  • “I have learned deeper realities about Canada that will help me enculturate smoothly.”
  • “Cultural background & language will help me more. It has created confidence in me to commit myself to the service of this land. “
  • “Language style is a process to be continued; with limited classes we can’t limit our efforts.”
  • “Many parishioners have age related hearing problems, then add in a new priest with a fast, difficult accent, and many had a tough time understanding at first. (Comment from a parish).”
  • “The topic of the need for language support is reinforced by a statement made by Fr. Louwagie, omi, who directs the enculturation program in San Antonio, TX. He states: “Failure to systematically dedicate space, time and effort ($$) to [improving their English language skills] from their very moment of arrival, leads to bad linguistic habits which cripple future apostolic work and create uncertainty and insecurity in the international priest”.


Priests' Enculturation Program 2012