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Papal envoy challenges Latin America’s missionaries to proclaim Gospel in other regions

Catholic World News - December 02, 2013

Three thousand missionaries from 24 nations gathered in Maracaibo, Venezuela, from November 26 to December 1 for CAM 4-COMLA 9, the 4th American Missionary Congress and the 9th Latin American Missionary Congress. The congress’s theme was “missionary America, share your faith.”

In his Latin-language message for the occasion, Pope Francis recalled the Second Vatican Council’s teaching that “the pilgrim Church is missionary by her very nature” and that “since this mission goes on and in the course of history unfolds the mission of Christ Himself, who was sent to preach the Gospel to the poor, the Church, prompted by the Holy Spirit, must walk in the same path on which Christ walked: a path of poverty and obedience, of service.”

The Venezuelan publication Diario Católico reported that Cardinal Fernando Filoni, the prefect for the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples and Pope Francis’s special envoy to the congress, challenged the missionaries to “be missionary disciples of Jesus Christ from America in the secularized and multicultural world” and to ask themselves whether proclaiming the Gospel is taking priority over preserving institutions.

“Everyone is waiting for the Gospel to reach the people who do not know Jesus, and that is why I know that Mexico has a great missionary role, it has sent missionaries around the world,” Cardinal Filoni added, according to a Fides report. “People who participate in this congress are people who come from this American continent and from Latin America, a continent where more than 500 years ago, the Gospel arrived. Now is the time that the continent allows faith to grow in other continents.”

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