VATICAN CITY, AUG. 31, 2004 (Zenit.org).- Paola Bignardi, president of Italian Catholic Action, emphasized John Paul II’s “delicacy and affection toward Catholic Action” when speaking of his participation in their upcoming pilgrimage to Loreto.
Speaking to the Vatican press office on Tuesday, Bignardi said that “the Holy Father gives us a great gift with his presence in Loreto, his only trip in Italy during this year.” The visit will be a culmination of the 1st International Congress on Catholic Action and will take place on Sept. 5.
“Catholic Action’s future is holiness,” Bignardi added, when explaining the reason for the Bishop of Rome’s beatification of three persons whose lives were profoundly linked to Catholic Action: Alberto Marvelli, Pina Suriano, and Pere Tarres i Claret. Catholic Action already has more than 60 saints and blessed.
Paola Bignardi pointed out that Catholic Action’s aim is to live the lay state “as a vocation,” and stressed the link of this vocation with holiness. “We are called to be men and women of God in the world and this is why we undertake the ways of holiness,” she said.
Pope Paul VI described Catholic Action as a “way of holiness.”
In his words, “the charism of Catholic Action is a gift for the universal Church” and a “prophetic sign of the unity of the Church.”