ADDRESS OF JOHN PAUL II
Saturday, 4 May 2002
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
1. I am glad to meet you today: thank you for this visit! Your numerous and joyful presence attests to what I said to the Cursillistas from around the world, meeting in Rome for the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000: "The tiny seed planted in Spain more than 50 years ago has become a great tree laden with fruits of the Spirit" (Audience, Saturday, 29 July 2000, n. 1; ORE, 9/16 August 2000, p. 3). My most cordial welcome to you. I thank the two representatives who spoke on your behalf, and the spiritual directors and the leaders of the movement.
Today the Cursillos de Cristiandad are present in more than 60 countries on all continents, and in 800 dioceses. In recent years, that seed sprang up and grew in Italy, bearing abundant fruit of conversion and holiness of life, in accord with the pastoral orientations of the Italian Bishops' Conference.
On that occasion, I recognized in these new ecclesial realities a providential response, raised up by the Holy Spirit for Christian formation and evangelization. At the same time, however, I urged people to grow in ecclesial consciousness and identity: "Today a new stage is unfolding before you: that of ecclesial maturity.... The Church expects from you the "mature' fruits of communion and commitment" (Prayer Vigil on the Eve of Pentecost, 30 May 1998, n. 6; ORE, 3 June 1998, p. 2).
The invitation is still valid and urgent, it is an authentic challenge that you should face with courage and determination. With this mandate to attain a more solid ecclesial maturity, I mention the request of the world Organism of the Cursillos de Cristiandad to the competent office of the Roman Curia for canonical recognition and the approval of its Statutes.
In fact, every day this engagement becomes more necessary and demanding. On your part, you will certainly not fail to make the precious contribution that derives from your own charism. Indeed, what else would the kerygmatic proclamation that is the heart of your movement mean than that we "firmly set our gaze on the face of the Christ", as I asked in Novo Millennio ineunte (cf. nn. 16ff.)? What does this contemplation involve if not entrusting oneself to the "primacy of grace" in order to start out on a journey of catechesis and prayer, of conversion and of holiness of life? What fruit does it produce, if not a stronger sense of belonging to the Church and a renewed zeal for evangelizing the places where you live and work?
4. Dear Cursillistas! Continue confidently on your journey of formation and Christian life undertaken with great generosity. "Duc in altum"! "Put out into the deep"! I entrust you to the motherly protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a wonderful example of obedience to the Father's will and a faithful disciple of her Son.
As I assure you of my special remembrance in prayer, I impart my Apostolic Blessing to you here, and to all your loved ones.