|‘Proclaim the wonders of God’ – 21 March 2010|
|Written by Vernon Khelawan|
| The absolute need for the Catholic Church in Trinidad and Tobago to ramp up its efforts at evangelisation can goes back to more than a decade ago when Pope John Paul II, was speaking in Port au Prince, Haiti.
He said just before the commemoration of 500 years of evangelisation on the American continent, that all these years of evangelisation would achieve its full meaning if it became a commitment by the bishops, priests and the people – a commitment not to re-evangelise, but to a new evangelisation – new in ardour, method and expression.
He later invited the whole Church to respond to the call, although he well understood that the programmes of evangelisation, embracing today’s world in all its diversity, must take different approaches in the light of two quite different situations.
“On the one hand,” the Pope explained, “the situation of countries strongly affected by secularisation and on the other, the situation of countries where there are still many vital traditions of piety and popular forms of Christian religiosity.
“There is no doubt that in varying degrees, both these situations are present in different countries, or better perhaps, in different groups within countries,” he added.
In the years leading up to the start of the new millennium, special assemblies of bishops were held on the five continents following which an Ordinary General Assembly was convened to identify the rich insights which had come from the various assemblies and to synthesise the conclusions drawn from them.
Pope John Paul II said that was possible because of the similarity of the concerns and points of interest which had emerged from all the Synods and he noted, “The theme underlying them all is evangelisation, or rather the new evangelisation, the foundation of which had been laid down in the Apostolic Exhortation – Evangelii Nuntiandi of Pope Paul VI.”
Speaking again, this time after the celebration of the 500th anniversary of the coming of the Gospel to America, he said the celebration of anniversaries, evoke in a particular way Christ’s love for us, stirs up in our souls, not only a sense of gratitude, but also a sense of the need to “proclaim the wonders of God” – in other words to evangelise.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 18 March 2010 17:53|