On September 10, 2018, the Venezuelan Bishops will meet with Pope Francis, as well as with several Vatican Dicasteries.
During the unfolding of the 110th Ordinary Plenary Assembly, last Tuesday, July 9, 2018, the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference (VEC) published a Pastoral Letter announcing the ad Limina Visit they will undertake to Rome from September 4-17.
A total of 45 Bishops, between Residentials and Auxiliaries, will travel to Rome to explain the country’s situation. Monsignor Mario Moronta, in charge of reading the Bishops’ Letter, explained that the visit “doesn’t have as an objective to establish a desk or to seek solutions but to receive His Holiness’ guidelines.”
The ad Limina Apostolorum visit has a precise meaning, namely: the strengthening of Bishops in their responsibility as Successors of the Apostles and of communion with the Successor of Peter, who receives them and addresses with the Bishops questions concerning their ecclesial mission.
Anxieties and Joys
The Venezuelan Episcopate has already sent a Report to the Holy See, in which it refers to the situation of the Church, of institutions, and activities and achievements.
“We will take the concerns, the anxieties, the grave problems, the great hopes and the great joy of our people. We are not going as tourists or as simple functionaries. This visit is an answer to God’s grace, who invites us to strengthen our ministry as Pastors and to receive new lights for the benefit of our pastoral action, ever in favor of the people of Venezuela,” assure the Prelates.
110th Plenary Assembly
Today, July 11, 2018, the Venezuelan Episcopate ends its 110th Ordinary Plenary Assembly held in the Casa Monsignor Ibarra, headquarters of the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference.
The VEC’s 110th Assembly began formally on Saturday, July 7, at 9 o’clock, with a Eucharistic celebration in the “Seat of Wisdom” Chapel of the Andres Bello Catholic University.
Monsignor Jose Luis Azuaje Ayala, VEC’s President and Archbishop-Elect of the Archdioceses of Maracaibo, gave the opening address last July 7, the day the Bishops’ meeting began, presenting Venezuela’s national and ecclesial panorama.
Triennial Plan 2018-2021
The Triennial Plan 2018-2021 was presented in this Assembly for its definitive approval. The VEC’s Triennial Plan is the product of the work of different organs of the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference, channeled through the General Secretariat and the different Departments and Pastoral Services that make it up. It responds to a mandate of Venezuela’s Plenary Council, which sees in it an “instrument for evangelization and pastoral animation” (ICM 239).
At present, the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference is made up of 41 Titular Bishops, among whom are two Cardinals, nine Archbishops, 27 Bishops, two Exarchs, one Bishop of the Military Ordinariate and five Auxiliary Bishops, who carry out their pastoral tasks in 41 ecclesiastical circumscriptions, in addition to 16 Bishops Emeritus.