After his book “Family, Become What You Are,” which invited every family to follow the momentum of Amoris Laetitia, becoming ever more a cell of the Church, a shrine of Love, a school of the Gospel and of human values, in his latest book “Presence and Action of God Communion (published by Parole et Silence) Cardinal Marc Ouellet proposes this time further reflection on the intrinsic bond between communion and mission at the heart of the Church, explains a note of the publisher.
Under the vigorous impulsion of Pope Francis, a new springtime of the mission resurfaces in the Church 50 years after the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, under the sign of mercy, of love of the poor and of Synodal ecclesiology.
These strong accents give the impression of a great novelty and yet, however, for one who is able to read the signs of the times, they emerge in profound continuity with the previous pontificates of Paul VI, Saint John Paul II and Benedict XVI. Beginning from a more profound rereading of the Council’s prophetic dimension, which appears especially in what God wishes to express of His mystery in this veritable Pentecost for the mission in the new millennium.
His prophetic discourse seems to pivot around the “mystery of communion,” which emanates from the testimony of Jesus Christ and that the Holy Spirit offers in participation to the Church in view of the salvation of the whole of humanity. This universal Trinitarian design is then deployed as a presence and a divine-human action that constitutes the fundamental theme running through all the conciliar texts and furnishing the key of their correct hermeneutics. Beyond ideological interpretations that propagate a prophetic role to human views, isn’t it necessary to revisit the prophetic role of the Council and allow oneself to be drawn by the Spirit in the testimony of God Communion that engages all the auditors of the Word and consequent thoughts and actions at the heart of the present history?
Pronounced in different circumstances according to the questions, the following commentaries of fundamental documents of the Council intend to help the reader to understand better the prophetic dimension of Francis’ Pontificate in the light of Vatican Council II, which is a privileged expression of the Christian Tradition at our time.
Francis’ reforming daring concerns not only the functioning and administration of the Roman Curia but above all the promotion of episcopal collegiality, in a spirit of synodality and “healthy decentralization” (EG, 16). It is accompanied by incisive gestures and words that return constantly to the themes of mercy, concern for the poor, fraternity and dialogue, having great ecumenical impact.
Extract of the Book
Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Presence and Action of God Communion. At the Heart of Vatican Council II, Parole et Silence Publishing House, 2017, pp. 7-8.
The Challenge of the New Times: To Evangelize by Attraction
Francis is the first to be on the go, pouncing on opportunities, cheerfully breaking habits. greeting warmly the greatest possible number during audiences, establishing dialogue with estranged or critical people, privileging the poor and the suffering, leading Bishops, priests and deacons to flee from all “spiritual worldliness,” cultivating unheard of and informal contacts with little ones without neglecting, however, the great of this world pressing at his door.
Francis began the reform of the Church, her missionary conversion, by a reform of the papacy. Who would have dared such a thing after the Beatification and Canonization of three Popes of the Council, and the great magisterium, amply recognized, of Benedict XVI? Who would dare such a thing other than the Holy Spirit who certainly wants to re-launch the great missionary adventure of the origins and of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council? (pp. 149-150).