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A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

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AD GENTES DIVINITUS

Decree of the Second Vatican Council on the Church's missionary activity. The Church's mission is defined as "the evangelization and the implanting of the Church among peoples or groups in which it has not yet taken root." Among the surprising recommendations is that the young churches of the newly evangelized take part "in the universal mission of the Church as soon as possible" and send "missionaries to preach the Gospel throughout the whole world, even though they are themselves short of clergy." Special stress is placed on adequate training of missionaries, their sanctity of life, and co-operation among themselves in the apostolate (December 7, 1965).

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

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