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01/ 5/2012 “Faith-centered dialogue with the world” – Vatican Insider – 7th January, 2012

With a view to the Year of Faith, proclaimed by Benedict XVI, 11 October 2012 to 24 November 2013, the Holy Office has prepared a note on an ecumenical theme
Alessandro Speciale
Vatican City

The Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith will publish a Note on 7 January with “pastoral instructions” in view of the event, organized into four levels: Universal church, Bishops’ Conferences, dioceses, and finally parishes, communities, and movements.

The machine has been set in motion for the Year of Faith – the event, announced in October with the Motu Proprio “Porta Fidei,” with which Benedict XVI urged Christians to a “choral commitment for the rediscovery and study of the fundamental contents of faith.”

To direct preparation for the Year, which will run from 11 October 2012 to 24 November 2013 – a period which includes the Synod on New Evangelization and World Youth Day at Rio de Janeiro – the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith will publish a Note on 7 January with some “pastoral instructions” in light of the event.

But the communiqué issued by the Holy Office already reveals some details about the Year, its main themes, and some of the events that will accompany it.

The Year of Faith, an initiative strongly supported by Pope Benedict XVI, “is meant to contribute to a renewed conversion to the Lord Jesus and the rediscovery of faith, so that all members of the Church are credible and joyous witnesses of the risen Lord, capable of directing many people who seek the door to faith.”

The opening date for the Year – 11 October – was chosen because it corresponds to two important anniversaries: the 50th anniversary of the opening of Vatican Council II, and the 20th anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church by Pope John Paul II.

The Year of Faith will therefore be “a prime occasion to promote the knowledge and spread of the contents of Vatican Council II and the Catechism.”

The Vatican Note highlights the centrality of Vatican Council II just as negotiations reach a critical point with the traditionalist LeFebrevians, who do not actually accept any of its fundamental formulations. The Council, it reads, wanted to “deepen…the intimate nature of the Church…and its relationship with the contemporary world.”

As a compass for the “reception” and “application” of its teachings, “in continuation with the whole of Tradition, under the sure guidance of the Magisterium,” it proposes what Benedict XVI himself has called “the hermeneutics of reform,” or “the renewal of continuity,” “rejecting as erroneous the so-called ‘hermeneutics of discontinuity and collapse.’“

Another fundamental theme of the Year of Faith will be ecumenical dialogue with other Christian churches. In this sense, during these 13 months the Vatican hopes for ecumenical initiatives to “invoke and promote the re-establishment of unity among all Christians.” There will also be “a solemn ecumenical celebration to reaffirm faith in Christ on the part of all baptized Christians.”

The proposal from the Holy Office – which in any case does not wish to “preclude other proposals that the Holy Spirit may inspire between Pastors and their faithful in various parts of the world” – will be organized into four levels: Universal church, Bishops’ Conferences, dioceses, and finally parishes, communities, and movements.

For example, the Bishops’ Conferences are urged to make “ample use of the language of communications and the arts,” for example, with “television and radio broadcasts, films, and publications, including at the popular level and accessible to a broad public.” With that same goal in mind, a website will be created for the Year of Faith.

The communiqué issued by the Congregation also reveals the names of those whose task it will be to prepare and coordinate the Year of Faith. A Committee was created which includes 11 cardinals ((William Levada, Francis Arinze, Angelo Bagnasco, Ivan Dias, Francis E. George, Zenon Grocholewski, Marc Ouellet, Mauro Piacenza, Jean-Pierre Ricard, Stanisław Ryłko, and Christoph Schönborn), two archbishops of the Curia – Salvatore Fisichella and Luis F. Ladaria – and three diocesan bishops, Mario Del Valle Moronta Rodríguez (from San Cristobal in Venezuela, the only South American on the list), Gerhard Ludwig Müller of Regensburg, and Raffaello Martinelli of Tripoli.

All the Year’s events will be coordinated by the appropriate Secretary at the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of New Evangelization, headed by Monsignor Fisichella.

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January 8, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized |

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