From the beginning, Francis Libermann urged the Spiritans, as missionaries, to shake off the customs and spirit of Europe when working in Africa.
It would be wishful thinking to claim that this ideal was always observed. The Second World War brought out the equivocal nature of the relations between missions and colonising countries. Africans were dragged into a war that had nothing to do with them. But it had the effect of awakening their own political awareness and a desire for national independence.
After the war, this independence movement grew in strength. And as the numbers of local clergy and sisters increased, there arose a corresponding feeling in the local Churches, a feeling that they were becoming capable of running their own affairs.