A JOURNEY WHICH HAS JUST BEGUN
This is the second issue of Tertium Millennium, following the special edition in February. The occasion which determined the commencement of publication the first meeting between the Central Committee for the Great Jubilee of the Year Two Thousand, and representatives of the local Churches of the world is one of the central themes of this "Bulletin" magazine, which has undertaken the difficult road of combining the authority of an official publication with the requisites of more agile, more immediate communication. We present that important February encounter in a extensive dossier: almost the minutes, in a journalistic form, of a meeting from which it has been possible to draft a first, practically complete, report on preparations for the Jubilee throughout the world. To lift our eyes to look across the continents is an essential condition for entering the spirit of an event which is of the same measure as the universality of the Church, an event which is nourished day by day ever more richly by the words of the Pope. The Great Jubilee of the Year 2000 has become part of the ordinary teaching of this extraordinary pontificate, truly a door thrown-open to serve a human race in search of hope. Of every one of the Holy Father's speeches, of his every reference concerning the Jubilee, Tertium Millennium intends to be a live archive, a faithful, updated diary. And so the word of the Pope becomes a guiding-section of this publication.
The Holy Land, Rome and the local Churches of the world, these are the three beacons from which humanity at the turn of the millennium will be illuminated by those same tidings that two thousand years ago marked the beginning of a new time: the time of Christ. Rome has just carried through the streets and across the squares of her splendid history the flares of a night pilgrimage of prayer, formed at the foot of the altar of the Pentecost Vigil. With that solemn celebration, in that unreachable setting of St Peter's Square, the Holy Father gave the start-word for Rome's great citymission. We have already, in some ways, begun the chronicle of an event which, while concerning more directly the eternal city, also symbolically perpetuates, that mission which "ever since the apostolic age has continued without interruption within the whole human family" (TMA, n. 57). Standing out in this unlimited space, in which the Church manifests her dedication to the whole of humanity, is one fast-approaching momentous date: the tenth anniversary of the Assisi Meeting of Prayer for Peace. In the prospective of the Great Jubilee of the Year Two Thousand, which assigns to ecumenism and interreligious dialogue the utmost importance, the "spirit of Assisi" evoked in a "special-feature" starting with an article by a protagonist, Cardinal Roger Etchegaray is a reassuring land-mark. As well as these two special features, we offer a panorama of the activity of the different Commissions: a detailed assessment of progress along the master-path leading to the essence of the Jubilee. And along this road Tertium Millennium will be a regular, reliable companion.
This second edition is a sequel to that Special Issue intended as a sample of possible contents and lay-out. We have no intention of over-estimating the signs of positive reception, indeed, even this second publication is in some way a "trial-edition". The idea is to establish before the end of the year, the premise for a set periodicity, on a monthly basis, which will allow the magazine to be presented in five language editions and, above all, to discern the best channels through which to answer to its charge as the connecting link between the Central Committee and the National Committees of the various nations. In actual fact, Tertium Millennium aims even higher: it would be also an areopaghus for debate and confrontation - from a clearly ecclesial stand point on the great themes evoked by the passing of the millennium. It should however be underlined, regarding its contents always and unquestionably, from the front page to the back page, concerning the Jubilee, that the bulletin is called to travel a way which has already been made straight by the Tertio Millennio adveniente. The document is in fact not only the Magna Charta indeed the Great Charter of the Jubilee's Spirituality but rather an authentic work-plan, a rich thematic treasure which commands serious commitment from the "work-bench" at which the magazine intends to carry out its task.