Convivence of bishops of Asia and Australia in the Domus Galilaeae 11-18-2006

Convivence of bishops of Asia and Australia in the Domus Galilaeae 11-18-2006

Benedict XVI

Convivence of bishops of Asia and Australia in the Domus Galilaeae 11-18-2006

From November 18 to 26, 2006, there was a gathering of 126 bishops from Asia (and some of Australia) of which 65 came from India along with the Cardinal Telesphore Toppo, Archbishop of Ranchi and President of the Episcopalian Conference of India. In his greeting at the end of the convivence, the Cardinal said particularly significant words about the work of the Neocatechumenal Way. We refer here to two short paragraphs:

«… Regarding the Neocatechumenal Way, the fundamental thing is what we have lived in these days and the experiences of visits to holy places. I didn’t know that three bishops of Rome -Paul VI, John Paul II and the current Pope- were so involved with the Neocatechumenal Way … I would have many things to say: this is not a work of Kiko, it is not a work Carmen or ours that we have been chosen and brought here -they are certainly the chosen ones, you believe it right? – but this is the work from God Himself to the Church, because He loves the Church. Through the times, it awakens people, as it has done in the past and also today. It is really a work of God …

Although it is the first time that I have contact with the Neocatechumenal Way, I say that this way is the need of this moment in time, and if we do not take it seriously, we won’t be capable of evangelizing ad gentes and we will also lose those who we call baptized Christians. So, if we are truly Christians, we need to be evangelized if we want evangelize others. I have to say something else. This cannot be the work of these laity or these itinerants or others: this is the work of the Church. These itinerants, these missionaries are in need of the ministry of the Church: this is the work of the Body of Christ. And we should be together and work together. We can’t lay our hands on the laity leaving them to evangelize alone: ​​if the Lord raises up zealous laity, bishops and priests must be fully with them, the whole church. The Church is by nature, missionary: the Church must evangelize, the Church must proclaim Jesus, if not, we are not the Church. So I am truly happy.

We publish the message that the Holy Father has sent to the Cardinals, bishops and all the participants in the coenvivence:

“On occasion of the meeting of bishops, priests and lay faithful of Asia and  Australia to reflect on missionary challenges and urgencies, The Supreme Pontiff greets the participants with the best wishes and also wants that this provident initiative be a moment of communion, reflection and communion of faith, creating a renewed commitment to proclaim Christ with the witness of your own life, invoking great outpouring of heavenly favors and sending out the implored apostolic blessing.”

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone
Secretary of State of His Holiness Benedict XVI