Full Text of Saturday, Oct. 13th Afternoon Interventions at Synod of Bishops

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 14, 2012 (Zenit.org).- Here is the Official Summary and Full Texts of Saturday afternoon’s Interventions at the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Faith. 

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Today, Saturday, October 13 2012, at 4:30 p.m, with the recitation of Psalm 22 (23) the Tenth General Congregation began for the continuation of the interventions by the Synod Fathers in the Hall on the Synodal theme: «The New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith».

President delegate on duty H. Em. Card. Laurent MONSENGWO PASINYA, Archbishop of Kinshasa (DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO).

A period for free discussion followed.

At this General Congregation, which ended at 7:00 pm with the prayer of Angelus Domini 222 Fathers were present.


The following Fathers intervened:

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Romulo G. VALLES, Archbishop of Davao (PHILIPPINES)
– Rev. F. Heinrich WALTER, General Superior of the Schoenstatt Fathers (GERMANY)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Leonardo ULRICH STEINER, O.F.M., Titular Bishop of Tisiduo, Auxiliary Bishop of Brasília (BRAZIL)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Santiago Jaime SILVA RETAMALES, Titular Bishop of Bela, Auxiliary Bishop of Valparaíso, General Secretary of the Latin American Episcopal Council (C.E.L.A.M.) (COLOMBIA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Ðuro HRANIĆ, Titular Bishop of Gaudiaba, Auxiliary Bishop and General Vicar of Ðakovo-Osijek (CROATIA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Benjamin PHIRI, Titular Bishop of Nachingwea, Auxiliary Bishop of Chipata (ZAMBIA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Marko SEMREN, O.F.M., Titular Bishop of Abaradira, Auxiliary Bishop of Banja Luka (BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. José Domingo ULLOA MENDIETA, O.S.A., Archbishop of Panamá (PANAMA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Ricardo Antonio TOBÓN RESTREPO, Archbishop of Medellín (COLOMBIA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Markos GHEBREMEDHIN, C.M., Titular Bishop of Gummi of Proconsular, Apostolic Vicar of Jimma-Bonga (ETHIOPIA)
– H. B. Béchara Boutros RAÏ, O.M.M., Patriarch of Antiochia of Maronites, Head of the Synod of the Maronite Church (LEBANON)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Juan de la Caridad GARCÍA RODRÍGUEZ, Archbishop of Camagüey (CUBA)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Julio César TERÁN DUTARI, S.I., Bishop of Ibarra (ECUADOR)
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. José Luis AZUAJE AYALA, Bishop of El Vigía San Carlos del Zulia, Vice President of the Episcopal Conference (VENEZUELA (BOLIVARIAN REP. OF))
– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Nicodème Anani BARRIGAH-BÉNISSAN, Bishop of Atakpamé (TOGO)

The summaries of the interventions are published below:

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Romulo G. VALLES, Archbishop of Davao (PHILIPPINES)

Mention is made in the Instrumentum laboris [no. 80] of the beautiful experience of the formation and development of Basic Christian Communities in parishes, and that this has transformed these parishes into animated and enlivened communities of faith. Our experience in the Philippines – and I have first-hand experience of this in the region and island of Mindanao – confirms this. We call them Basic Ecclesial Communities. The Christian faith is better sustained and nourished, and deepened and protected when lived and practiced by individuals and families in these Basic Ecclesial Communities. In these communities, the witness to and confession of faith and the necessary catechism about our faith, are experienced more intensely; the celebrations of faith, especially the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, are experienced as moving encounters of the Lord, in his Word and the Eucharist; and the service in charity is easily seen and closely felt. Our positive experience of the presence of Basic Ecclesial Communities in our dioceses and parishes makes us very hopeful that our mission – the New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith – can be done. We are convinced that the emergence and development ofBasic Ecclesial Communities is truly inspired by the Holy Spirit.
Mention is also made in the Instrumentum laboris [nos. 138-146] about the Demands of Initial Proclamation. This really caught my attention. First, because there is a very good and interesting explanation and description given about it. Second, that in many dioceses in the Philippines, we have been actually doing and organizing events and activities which can truly be considered modes of «Initial Proclamation» without really considering and explicitly referring to them as such, in the way the Instrumentum laboris describes them. We have continued doing them because we have seen how effective they are in sustaining and nourishing and celebrating our faith in the Lord Jesus. Now we know more. Now we are greatly encouraged. 

[00140-02.03] [IN109] [Original text: English]

– Rev. F. Heinrich WALTER, General Superior of the Schoenstatt Fathers (GERMANY)

If we look at the long term, then the Church in the Western world cannot be renewed without the renewal of the family. Whoever has childern has a future. Parents with many children are statistically considered the happiest persons in society. Marriage and family must be recognized today as a vocation. This is where evangelization occurs. The believers follow, going against the current in relationship to society, the path of the sequela of Christ. For this they must be supported intensely in the preparation towards matrimony. The Sacrament of Matrimony is very precious. The failure of matrimony often has tragic consequences. We must ask ourselves clearly which are the conditions necessary for the Sacrament of Matrimony. Here a distinction must be made for the good of the family. The family remains the foundation for learning the faith. The family means seeing one’s home as the house of God. Children, with their parents, follow the lengthy path in learning the faith. The vitality of a community is connected to these homes. Families are not only the privileged location for evangelization, but inasmuch as they are laity they are also agents of evangelization. In South America, I came to know about the project of familial missions. A number of families meet and during their holidays they go to live in a community for one week. Here they live very simply, and, as a family, go from house to house to bear witness to their faith. In this way, cities and districts are evangelized. Seeing these families publically bearing witness to their vocation is a sign of hope.

[00141-02.02] [IN110] [Original text: German]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Leonardo ULRICH STEINER, O.F.M., Titular Bishop of Tisiduo, Auxiliary Bishop of Brasília (BRAZIL)

I would like to refer to the subjects of the transmission of the faith. Lumen Gentium states that “by reason of their special vocation it belongs to the laity to seek the kingdom of God by engaging in temporal affairs and directing them according to God’s will… There they are called by God that, being led by the spirit to the Gospel, they may contribute to the sanctification of the world, as from within like leaven, by fulfilling their own particular duties. Thus, especially by the witness of their life, resplendent in faith, hope and charity they must manifest Christ to others” (LG, 31).
– The Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi recalls that “the laity can also feel themselves called, or be called, to work with their pastors in the service of the ecclesial community for its growth and life, by exercising a great variety of ministries according to the grace and charisms which the Lord is pleased to give them” (no. 73).
– The document of the Latin American Conference of Bishops in Santo Domingo (no. 97), taking its inspiration from the Apostolic Exhortation Christifideles, invites all lay persons become the protagonists of new evangelization, of human promotion and of Christian culture. The constant promotion of the laity is necessary, free from any type of clericalism and without diminishing the intra-ecclesial. That the non-evangelized baptized should become the main recipients of new evangelization. This will effectively be achieved if the laity, conscious of their b
aptism, will answer the calling of Christ to be converted to being the protagonists of the new evangelization.
New evangelization should take youths into consideration as ‘new agents’ of evangelization: the young who evangelize the young. To prepare them for catechesis, through the participation in the life of the Community of faith and the missionary experiences to be able to work in the Community and in society. To consider the new aeropagi of youths themselves as the world of education, media, internet, art and others. Indefeasible spaces for the new evangelization.

[00143-02.04] [IN112] [Original text: Italian]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Santiago Jaime SILVA RETAMALES, Titular Bishop of Bela, Auxiliary Bishop of Valparaíso, General Secretary of the Latin American Episcopal Council (C.E.L.A.M.) (COLOMBIA)

New Evangelization can be carried out, since at least two estimates.
The first is from an ecclesiology which responds to the II Vatican Council, reread for Latin America, by the event of Aparecida, which characterizes the Church as a sign and instrument of salvation, which comes out and it is understood because of the announcement of Jesus Christ and service to the world as icon of the Trinity. The second assumption is the capacity for empathy and sympathy with the world and, therefore, a church that talks, which does not fear anything that is human, especially because the Son of Man came to bring to fulfillment to all men and to the whole man. 
From this perspective the Church «as always» calls to open up new scenes to evangelize; it cannot be a «traditional” community, but anchored in a live tradition. It cannot be a community of closed and selfish hermeneutics, but a community that feels challenged by the Word of God, which listens with a prolific silence. It cannot be a powerful community that «im-poses» but which «ex-poses» because it is fully aware of the holder of the Truth and Life. No community can be ritualistic, but that which redefines life and puts it in the horizon of transcendence for sacramental medidtation.
We can never forget that our origin is Jesus of Nazareth the Messiah who was disparaged and crucified, and therefore, we are disciples of he who was excluded and stigmatized by his society. From this conviction we must commit ourselves in the New Evangelization.
ne [00144-02.03] [IN113] [Original text: Spanish]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Ðuro HRANIĆ, Titular Bishop of Gaudiaba, Auxiliary Bishop and General Vicar of Ðakovo-Osijek (CROATIA)

The Church in Croatia still has many people, and the question of evangelization focuses on catechistic and mystagogic attempts to deepen personal faith and its ecclesial and sacramental dimensions, in order that they might survive the current growing wave of secularization, so that they may become capable of justifying the reasons for their own hope and take on responsibility in the various fields of public life.
Although Communism has collapsed, its fragments remain to this day – concealed in the mentalities and models of life, which operate everywhere. They are present even in the mentality of Catholics, who are tempted to withdraw from both public life and civil society. The ideological relics of a materialist and atheist nature have in recent years moved towards the positions, values and needs of liberal neocapitalism. With the excuse of protecting and promoting human rights, freedom and democracy, these promote through political life, the mass media and associations of civil society an entirely libertine style of life. Since they are presented as the spokespersons and protectors of democracy, of the scientific approach, and of culture, the positions they take become indisputable. 
Behind a demagogy of tolerance, we frequently find ourselves in reality at odds with a culture of irony and irreverence with regard to the faith and to Christian values. Often nowadays, Catholics not only in Croatia but also elsewhere, feel like Alexsamenos at the dawn of Christianity, in the school for imperial slaves destined to serve the Emperor on the Palatine Hill.
One feels the need to seek a suitable approach which, prior to evangelical proclamation, makes an effort to accept and enter into dialogue at a cultural and anthropological level.

[00145-02.05] [IN114] [Original text: Italian]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Benjamin PHIRI, Titular Bishop of Nachingwea, Auxiliary Bishop of Chipata (ZAMBIA)

Taking into account Numbers 122, 159 and 160 of the Instrumentum Laboris, we, the Zambian Episcopal Conference (ZEC) and the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences of Eastern Africa (AMECEA), hereby affirm that a well-formed clergy and religious will enhance the evangelizing effort of the Church in the New Evangelization, since in Africa Evangelization is still in its infancy for the most part. A committed clergy will help form the mind and spirit of the whole people of God such that through their teaching and life, people will learn from and imitate their pastors. So far this effort has been hampered by, at times, an approach to the pastoral ministry which has two aspects, one theoretical and the other practical. All those who have been through priestly and religious formation have a very good academic and theological preparation but are often poor witnesses of the word they preach. In order to have any impact at all in the preaching of the Word in the New Evangelizing effort, the pastors will have to lead by example. This will require a better preparation of the formators and also a better following up of the candidates to the priesthood and religious life. Large numbers of students in our seminaries are usually not marched by an equal ratio of formators. This makes it impossible for any meaningful formation to take place, leading to a situation where many unsuitable candidates do actually make it to the priesthood but later become bad shepherds rather than good shepherds, scattering instead of gathering the sheep. Diocesan Bishops and other Local Ordinaries will have to resist the ftlinetemptation of just finding personnel to fill up vacant places in the parishes and institutions. They will have to resist the temptation of sending just any academically qualified priest into a seminary house of formation, since academic qualification is not equal to suitability to form another human being into a worthy shepherd of the flock. Local Ordinaries will need to invest more in on-going formation programs and other seminars which can help shepherds to become also good managers of both spiritual and temporal goods of the Church.

[00147-02.04] [IN116] [Original text: English]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Marko SEMREN, O.F.M., Titular Bishop of Abaradira, Auxiliary Bishop of Banja Luka (BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA)

New evangelization experienced in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BaH) is directed to the self-evangelization of the Church and the evangelization of the world we live in. Because BaH is a land of mission and Catholics are a minority, it is necessary to renew the missionary impulse of the announcers of the Gospel to being more open to the act of grace of the Holy Spirit, witnessing with their life the Good News and so the Holy Spirit may open the hearts of those listening to accept and live the Gospel. The aim of evangelization is the metanoia and the fundamental option for the Word of God.
BaH, just like many other nations in transition, from the fall of Communism to the rise of new states, have been through war and post-war difficulties. The difficulties lived by the population emerge, especially those of the decimated Croat Catholics. In BaH there were more than 1,200,000 refugees. Of the 830,000 Catholics, 465,000 were made to leave their homes and their native residences, because of “ethnic and religious cleansing”. Now, sixteen years after the war, in all of BaH there are about 463,000 Catholics, which means that 367,000 Catholic expatriates never returned to BaH. The following have occurred: moral and ethical crises, infrastructures, homes, churches, destroyed, the presence of the phenomenon of seculari
sm, unemployment, poverty, inequality of rights, disorders and dysfunctions of the State itself. There is an attempt to recreate trust among the peoples and the various religions and to renew dialogue and ecumenism, but it isn’t advancing in leaps and time is necessary. A need for greater evangelization of the family, because a hedonistic mentality has entered, the culture of the dead: drugs and other addictions.
The starting point for new evangelization must be the return to the sources, re-discovering the heredity of the peoples and the Nation, with a special effort in reinforcing the ethical and moral values in society, compromised by the prior totalitarianism and the new violence of war.

[00148-02.03] [IN117] [Original text: Italian]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. José Domingo ULLOA MENDIETA, O.S.A., Archbishop of Panamá (PANAMA)

Jesus ordered his disciples to be his witnesses in Jerusalem, in Galilee and to go to the furthest confines of the earth. And it was precisely this testimony of love that most engendered the admiration of the pagans. The testimony of Christian love continues to have evangelical strength today, as Blessed Pope John Paul II affirmed: “the future of evangelization depends in great part on the Church of the home” (FC 52).
However, for our family to reflect the face of the Church of the home, it is necessary to be a true community of love and life, of faith and salvation. And this will be possible inasmuch as it is reinforced within the nucleus of the family and in the sacrament of marriage. 
However, in order to arrive at this we must develop and reinforce a pastoral care that accompanies marriage and families. We must dedicate more time and better resources to the preparation for the sacrament of marriage. We await with great interest the Vademecum prepared by the Pontifical Council for the Family, which will certainly contribute to the improvement of the human and Christian qualities of marriage. We must give greater pastoral dedication to sacramental marriages already celebrated through guidance programs in order that they be strengthened and prepared for the fulfilment of their commitments within the family, Church and society. The catechism of adults requires more attention on the part of all the Church.
This is without neglecting families in irregular situations, who constitute another cause for pastoral concern. In spite of this constant attention to the pastoral care of “irregular” families (divorced and remarried), it seems that an adequate answer to the problem has not been found and it is a frequent source of evident dissatisfaction for the faithful who experience situations of this type and who feel misunderstood, judged, condemned and excluded, although they continue to believe in the mercy of God the Father and wish to live in the bosom of the Church.

[00149-02.03] [IN118] [Original text: Spanish]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Ricardo Antonio TOBÓN RESTREPO, Archbishop of Medellín (COLOMBIA)

The New Evangelization in order to transmit faith should be much more than multiplying what we have done, it should be a full act, that in the circumstances of today’s world , highlights the intelligence, guiding freedom, moving the feelings, committing all life .
Evangelization is an event, at the same time complex and simple. Complex because we can place it in the order of creation, simple because grace produces it naturally for those who are willing. In my humble opinion, the various processes in which evangelization is developed , should favor three specific and fundamental experiences.
Firstly, the experience of the fatherhood of God. An encounter with Christ and a process of discipleship with him should enable a fundamental and native experience of Jesus. Affiliation therefore would be desirable to come back to the initial kerygma of Jesus: God is near, his paternity is in action, his kingdom is close at hand (Mark 1:15, Luke 17:20). Whoever, with the grace of the Holy Spirit reaches this experience, meets forever the meaning of life and has the strength to carry out the project that is in the plans of God.
Secondly, it is necessary to have in a concrete way the experience of the Christian community. Because the New Evangelization is an ecclesiastical act which must promote the community at all levels: family as first domestic Church, small ecclesiastical communities as fundamental space for life, the parish as living center of spirituality and pastoral which integrates and where other realities meet, the particular Church which, following the teaching of Vatican II, makes the mystery of the Church concrete and authentic.
Thirdly, we must get to the experience of the joy of giving to God. Transmitting the faith is not a load, it is a necessity, is a guarantee, it is the life itself of those who live the earlier experiences. Woe to me if I do not evangelize, said Paul (cf. 1 Cor 9:16) The true evangelization arises from the contact with God and with men in the power of the Holy Spirit. It is the humble and brave testimony of what is experienced and cannot be silenced.

[00150-02.02] [IN119] [Original text: Spanish]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Markos GHEBREMEDHIN, C.M., Titular Bishop of Gummi of Proconsular, Apostolic Vicar of Jimma-Bonga (ETHIOPIA)

The program of preparing and educating catechists in various dioceses be revitalised, reviewed and formed to prepare Catechists for their particular ministry in the Church.
The Office of Catechist to be recognised and instituted as stable ministry that has a permanent place in the local Church.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church remains very difficult to understand for many of the faithful, there is need to simplify it and also to have simplified versions in the various local languages.
Catechesis to be put within the context of On-Going Formation so that the pessimistic impression that catechism is only for children is changed.
The Catechetical program to be situation and also appealing to the faithful at different age groups. Catechetical material to be suitable for all the age groups.
Pastoral training centres to refine and intensify the development of the different methods of helping those who are involved in catechesis.
The involvement of parents, godparents and the Christian community in the preparation of 
children for sacraments.
The Church needs to re-affirm the irreplaceable role of catechists in the Church and equip them with resources that will make them efficient ministers of the New Evangelization. They need to be offered enough resources to sustain their families and also enable them to understand their role in the Church as a vocation. At this great moment of renewal in proclaiming and transmitting the faith, a decision to that effect would be seen as a very strong support and resource in the new evangelization called for in the Church.

[00154-02.04] [IN123] [Original text: English]

– H. B. Béchara Boutros RAÏ, O.M.M., Patriarch of Antiochia of Maronites, Head of the Synod of the Maronite Church (LEBANON)

With reference to the Instrumentum laboris no. 56-57, interreligious dialogue is an important part of the new evangelization. I will limit myself to the dialogue with Islam in the Arab countries. This dialogue is mentioned among the new economic, political and religious actors, appearing on the world scene.
It is a specific dialogue, like the one described in the Apostolic Exhortation “Ecclesia in the Middle East”, which the Holy Father signed on September 15th during his visit to Lebanon: “This dialogue is based on the spiritual and historical bonds uniting Christians to Jews and Muslims. It is a dialogue which is not primarily dictated by pragmatic political or social considerations, but by underlying theological concerns which have to do with faith. They are grounded in the sacred Scriptures and are clearly defined in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium and in the Declaration on the Church’s Relation to Non-Christian Religions Nostra Aetate” (no. 19).
on is practiced in the Arab countries in an indirect way, in other words in Catholic schools, universities, hospitals and social institutions belonging to the dioceses and religious orders open to Muslims as well as Christians. Indirect evangelization is above all practiced via the means of social communication, especially the Catholic ones, that broadcast the liturgical celebrations and various religious programs. We would like to point out some secret conversions by Muslims to Christianity.
The allocutions pronounced by the Holy Father in Lebanon and the Apostolic Exhortation “Ecclesia in the Middle East”, will help to reach a “Christian spring”, which will contribute, through the grace of God and by a new clarified evangelization, to a true “Arab spring” of democracy. Liberty, justice, peace,and the defense of man’s dignity against all forms of violence and the suppression of rights.

[00161-02.02] [IN124] [Original text: French]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Juan de la Caridad GARCÍA RODRÍGUEZ, Archbishop of Camagüey (CUBA)

The new evangelization is very old. It comes from the first and greatest evangelist: Jesus Christ. He tells us: «Go to all people.» It is very important because if we go, to whom do we proclaim the Gospel of Christ?
Blessed John Paul II, messenger of truth and hope and Benedict XVI went to Cuba and the Holy Spirit made Cuban Catholics go to knock on every door of every house to announce the arrival of those who came in the name of Christ. The Virgin of Charity, Mother and Patroness of Cuba, through a historical picture, went to all the peoples of Cuba and the missionaries were soon to announce that the Virgin is the Mother of the Son of God made man and that charity must unite all the children of the Virgin.
We bishops too have a mandate to go and meet our sheep in their homes, places for youth, sports fields, holiday locations, prisons, hospitals, schools and others to tell them that the way to happiness, the real and true life, is Christ.
Visiting those unfamiliar with the Gospel of Christ we can teach in the captivating creativity and patience of the mother who feeds her son who does not want to, but ends up eating. We have the mandate to teach everything the Lord commanded us. Positively teaching the wonder of life which begins at the mother’s breast, natural marriage, faithful and fruitful, the wealth of the elderly, the virtues and values, is more effective than scolding and threatening those who have been wrong many times out of ignorance. Perhaps because they could not do things any differently.
Evangelization in Cuba began with the administration of sacraments. Like today, many people without really knowing what they want, want to baptize their children and celebrate Masses for the dead. The pastoral art is catechizing before, in the middle of the celebration and after.
Charity has always been and effective evangelistic witness. May the Holy Spirit allows us to build communities that are distinguished by love for one another and with all. St. John of Avila and St. Hildegard have been in heaven for centuries and yet today they continue to evangelize. Without doubt, the best evangelists are the holy men and women.
When the Bishop is the protagonist of evangelization in his diocese, his whole Church is behind him.

[00162-02.02] [IN127] [Original text: Spanish]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Julio César TERÁN DUTARI, S.I., Bishop of Ibarra (ECUADOR)

The goal of a New Evangelization of Christian faith lived entirely in all its dimensions:
1. What we believe in is a historical person who overcomes and rescues history: Jesus Christ, Son of God and the Holy Mary, died and resurrected, given to the world as permanent novelty for his presence and activity in the Church; divine Word made flesh and offered to us to solve the human enigma and discover the mystery of God’s Trinitarian love, giving communion of eternal life that transforms reality.
2. The individual believer: whoever has a thirst for truth and justice is called to be this, in a personal encounter with the event of the living Christ, by the gift of grace that makes the human response possible.
3. The act itself of believing occurs in processes of planting, growth and purification, to engage people in multiple relationships with God, each other and to the human environment and land; it develops in supportive participatory communities, of disciples and missionaries who pray and celebrate the Word, practice and witness it, in the communion of the only Church and its Pastors, thus involving the whole life, both private and public, always in a dialogue with the world to offer to Jesus Christ.

[00163-02.02] [INI26] [Original text: Spanish]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. José Luis AZUAJE AYALA, Bishop of El Vigía – San Carlos del Zulia, Vice President of the Episcopal Conference (VENEZUELA (BOLIVARIAN REP. OF)

Faith and charity in Christian life require that one mutually supports the other. Charity without faith is mere philanthropy (cf. IL 123), and faith that is not expressed in charity is an abstract faith; so both faith and charity involve the testimony of Christian life. Faith in charity shows us the face of Christ and sustains the preferential option for the poor, knowing that this option is «implicit in the Christological faith in the God who became poor for us, enrich us with his poverty » (DI Aparecida, 3). Charity, in turn, bears witness to faith in the Risen Lord, who has given us the fullness of life.
The Church holds a valuable instrument of guidance and orientation for a New Evangelization of the social: Social Doctrine with its missionary component: the witness of love of Christ through the work of justice, peace and human development proposed in this doctrine (cf. VC 15). She must become announcement and witness of faith in the Resurrected who makes all things new.
In Latin America and the Caribbean, the Social Doctrine of the Church has played a key role in strengthening the faith of Christians, so that as «missionary disciples of Jesus Christ we have the priority task of witnessing the love to God and neighbor with concrete works «(DA 386). If we therefore assume a New Evangelization of the social, we must give you a new appreciation of the Social Doctrine of the Church, knowing that she is «announcement and witness of faith. It is an indispensable instrument of education and place of faith» (CV 15), which leads us to be able to host and transmit his teachings with «parrhesia», pervading with its contents catechesis, liturgy, Christian education, the pensum of seminaries, religious houses, permanent formation of Bishops and priests, and above all lay formation. In fact it is lay people, because of their secular character, who have the responsibility of transforming the socio-cultural-political-economic reality of our peoples.

[00164-02.02] [IN127] [Original text: Spanish]

– H. Exc. Rev. Mons. Nicodème Anani BARRIGAH-BÉNISSAN, Bishop of Atakpamé (TOGO)

Our local Church is young and in full bloom. She represents approximately 25% of the population in Togo. However, she is faced with many challenges, of which I will mention four important concerns that refer to numbers 18, 29, 34, 57, 65 and 66 of the Instrumentum laboris.
1. The growth of Islam. The rapid expansion of Islam and especially the spreading of fundamentalism in West Africa enormously worries the Church. It only takes one day to become Muslim; but it is impossible to renounce this religion later. On the other hand, the preparation of catechumens lasts from three to four years in our dioceses; yet the baptized may quit the Catholic faith easily.
2. The proliferation of sects. The poverty of our people, youth unemployment, political deception, the strong religiosity of our people all make up a fertile terrain where sects grow and easily gather their adepts from among our faithful.
3. Secret and esoteric societies, especially the freemasons reign as masters at the head of the State, in the most important institutions and in all the intellectual cir
cles of our country.
4. The lack of a formation of faithful.
5. The ministry of healing. More and more priests devote themselves to this ministry of liberation, of deliverance, of spiritual healing of the faithful, especially those coming from paganism, who feel a certain anguish when facing sorcery and the phenomenon of witchcraft.
The Episcopal Conference of Togo is convinced that the new evangelization should begin with the evangelizers themselves. She is full of hope and calls the entire Church to a pastoral conversion in humility and trust.

[00165-02.02] [IN128] [Original text: French]


«The Word of God in the Life and the Mission of the Church» and «The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church» were the themes of the XII and XI Ordinary General Assemblies of the Synod of Bishops, celebrated in the Vatican in 2008 and 2005. Two volumes, which are entitled with the same synodal theme, have been offered by the Secretary General and the American Bible Society to the Synodal Fathers and other Participants in this Assembly.
Edited by the Lateran University Press, the texts were edited by, respectively, the Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops, H. Exc. Mons. Nikola ETEROVIĆ, Tit. Archbishop of Cibale (VATICAN CITY), and by Fr Roberto Nardin, OSB Oliv., Monk of the Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore, Professor of Theology at the Pontifical Lateran University (ITALY).
They are both composed of four parts. They contain synodal acts, from announcements to themes, with the relative preliminaries, through the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortations “Verbum Domini” and “Sacramentum Caritatis”.
The available documentation is broad: synodal works are reviewed, retracing all of the General Congregations, meetings of the Working Groups, the development of the Propositions and information on Synod activities. In the Appendices are the texts of the Secretary General, in particular the Lineament, the Instrumentum laboris, the list of Participants and the various Commissions.

[00221-02.03] [NNNNN] [Original text: Italian]


The Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization offered to the Synodal Fathers and other Participants in the XIII Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops the “Enchiridion of the New Evangelization”, in a special edition for the Year of Faith.
The text, edited by the Vatican Publishing House, contains texts of Pontifical and Council Magisterium. The publication is an instrument which collects the multiformity of expression of “New Evangelization” and its richness, by means of a wide selection of extracts from speeches, messages, homilies, apostolic letters and other papal documents since 1939. It also contains excerpts from official documents from Vatican Council II.
All texts were chosen according to their relevance to the New Evangelization.
The Enchiridion presents this theme beginning with the formation and circulation of the idea itself over the course of the last decades, and demonstrates its importance for the Church today.

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