Vatican City, Nov 15, 2016 / 13:01 pm
In a video message sent to the US bishops' plenary meeting on Tuesday, Pope Francis urged them to continue reaching out to immigrants, especially commending the upcoming fifth national "Encuentro" on Hispanic/Latino ministry.
He said in the Nov. 15 message that while visiting the nation last year, "I was impressed by the vitality and diversity of the Catholic community … In this context, I would commend the coming Fifth National Hispanic Pastoral Encuentro."
The Church in the US has "welcomed and integrated new waves of immigrants" throughout its history, he noted, adding that "in the rich variety of their languages and cultural traditions, they have shaped the changing face of the American Church."
The Encuentro is a multi-year process meant to improve the quality of ministry among Hispanic Catholics, and is a priority for the US bishps' strategic plan. It involves missionary activity, consultation, leadership development, and pastoral discernment.