Loading
Constant intellectual, spiritual formation necessary for priests, laity, Pope tells Polish bishops

.- On Saturday, Pope Benedict met with his second group of Polish bishops, in Rome for their ad limina visit, whom he charged with renewed pastoral care for priests, seminarians, religious and the laity.

This morning, the Pope received the second group of prelates from the Conference of the Polish Episcopate, who have just completed their "ad limina" visit.

In his remarks to them the Pope stressed the importance of the new evangelization which, he said was one of the major themes and first initiatives of his predecessor, John Paul II.

"Under his guidance”, Benedict said, “we entered this new millennium of Christianity, with an awareness of the constant validity of his call to a new evangelization."

Stressing the primary role of bishops in the duty of evangelization, the Pope pointed out that they are also responsible for "quality of formation in seminaries."

He asked them to bear in mind "not only future priests' intellectual formation for their impending duties, but also their spiritual and emotional formation." Therein, he urged the prelates to implement new guidelines laid down in the recently-published document by the Congregation for Catholic Education concerning candidates for the seminary and priesthood.

"It is important," the Holy Father said, "that the process of spiritual and intellectual formation does not end with the seminary. Constant priestly formation is necessary.”

He then recalled that “in Polish dioceses ... courses, retreats, spiritual exercises and other meetings are organized, during which priests can share their pastoral problems and successes."

He told the bishops that they must "listen attentively to priests and help them in their difficulties," before thanking God for the numerous vocations in Poland and calling on priests to "undertake missionary service or pastoral commitment in countries where there is a lack of clergy."

Religious and laity

Pope Benedict then turned to the pastoral care of the laity, as well as male and female religious and consecrated, who he said, “represent a source of great wealth for the Church.”

In this context, he called on the prelates to specifically watch over female religious communities.

"Nuns who undertake various services in the Church”, the Pope said, “merit supreme respect, and their work must be recognized and appreciated correctly. They must not be denied adequate spiritual support or the possibility of intellectual development and growth in the faith. ... And I particularly call upon you to take to heart the wellbeing of the contemplative orders."

Turning then to the laity, the Pope said that "one of the chief aims of the activity of the laity is the moral renewal of society, which cannot be superficial, partial and instantaneous.”

“One specific task of the laity”, he said, “is participation in public and political life. ... The Church does not identify herself with any one party, political community or political system; she does, however, recall that lay people in public life must bear courageous and coherent witness to Christian values, which have to be affirmed and defended when they are threatened.”

“They must do so publicly,” he stressed, “both in political debates and in the communications media"

"Dialogue undertaken by the Catholic laity on political questions," the Holy Father added, "will prove effective and of service to the common good when it is founded on love for truth, a spirit of service, and united commitment in favor of the common good."

Following the Holy Father's address, Krakow’s Archbishop Stanislaw Dziwisz took the stage to address the Pope.

"There is a reason”, he said, “for which we would like express our gratitude…and that is your adherence to the person and the work of Servant of God John Paul II.”

“In the first place,” he continued, “we would like to say thank you for your discreet, competent and faithful collaboration throughout such a rich and important pontificate. We can only imagine how precious your wise advice was to John Paul II, both in the most difficult theological questions and in matters concerning the daily life of the Universal Church.”

He also thanked the Pope “for the delicacy with which you accompanied your dear predecessor in the final days of his sickness and for your testimony as dean of the College of Cardinals during the funeral,” adding that no one could forget “your continuous recollection of the teaching and example of John Paul II in your speeches and pastoral activities.”

The Archbishop likewise expressed his gratitude “for the decision to reduce the time for the opening of the cause of beatification of our beloved Pope…Thank you, Your Holiness!"

Archbishop Dziwisz closed his brief address by extending a heartfelt invitation to the Pope to visit Poland.

The Church there, he said, is "anxious to welcome you. We all await your visit to our country and to the Church that loves you and supports you with constant prayer. You may be certain of these sentiments.”

“As you know,” he said, “the beloved John Paul II never sought to bind people to his own person, but to Peter's Successor. Our people unhesitatingly understood this concept; they do not cease to love the late Pope, but they equally love the one who succeeded him.”

Lastly, the Archbishop told the Pope that “it is above all young people who ask us to tell Your Holiness that they want to meet you during your visit to Poland. I would be honored if this meeting were to take place in Krakow."


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

A Look at India from Rome
A Look at India from Rome
3D Church mapping
#PAUSEforPeace Initiative
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
Jul
31

Liturgical Calendar

July 31, 2014

Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Priest

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:47-53

Gospel
Date
07/31/14
07/30/14
07/29/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Jer 18: 1-6
Gospel:: Mt 13: 47-53

Saint of the Day

St. Ignatius of Loyola »

Saint
Date
07/28/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 13:47-53

Homily
Date
07/31/14
07/30/14
07/29/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: