Vatican City, Oct 7, 2012 / 11:25 am America/Denver (CNA).
Pope Benedict XVI has formally opened the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization with a “universal call to holiness” aimed at all Christians worldwide.
“Holy men and women bloom among the generous missionaries who announce the Good News to non-Christians, in the past in mission countries and now in any place where there are non-Christians,” the Pope said in his homily for the Oct. 7 opening Mass in St. Peter’s Square.
“Holiness is not confined by cultural, social, political or religious barriers. Its language, that of love and truth, is understandable to all people of good will and it draws them to Jesus Christ, the inexhaustible source of new life.”
Over the next three weeks the Synod of Bishops will aim to map out a new evangelization of the contemporary world. The Pope explained that the particular focus of “new” evangelization are those people “who, though baptized, have drifted away from the Church and live without reference to the Christian life.”
“The Synodal Assembly which opens today is dedicated to this new evangelization, to help these people encounter the Lord, who alone who fills existence with deep meaning and peace,” he said. He added that a rediscovery of the Christian faith can be a “source of grace which brings joy and hope to personal, family and social life” for the re-evangelized.