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30 September-27 October 2001

"The Bishop: Servant of the Gospel of Jesus Christ for the Hope of the World"

The Bulletin of the Synod of Bishops is only a working instrument for journalistic use and the translations from the original are not official.

English Edition


05 - 01.10.2001







AAt 17:00 today, in the presence of the Holy Father, with the reciting of the Adsumus, the Second General Congregation was held, for the beginning of the interventions by the Synod Fathers in the Hall on the Synodal theme. The president Delegate on duty was H. E. Card. Giovanni Battista RE, Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.

AThis General Congregation ended at 19:00 with the prayer Angelus Domini and 237 Fathers were present.


The following Fathers then intervened:

- H.E. Most Rev. Joachim Phayao MANISAP, Bishop of Nakhon Ratchasima (THAILAND).

- H.E. Most Rev. Paul Yoshinao OTSUKA, Bishop of Kyoto (JAPAN).

- H.E. Most Rev. Javier LOZANO BARRAGÁN, Archbishop, Bishop Emeritus of Zacatecas, President of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care (VATICAN CITY).

- H.E. Most Rev. Stephen Fumio HAMAO, Archbishop, Bishop Emeritus of Yokohama, President of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of the Migrants and Itinerant People (VATICAN CITY).

- H. Em. Card. Pedro RUBIANO SÁENZ, Archbishop of Bogotá (COLUMBIA).

- H.E. Most Rev. Joseph CHENG TSAI-FA, Bishop of Tainan (TAIWAN).

- H.E. Most Rev. Rubén SALAZAR GÓMEZ, Archbishop of Barranquilla (COLUMBIA)

- H.B. Nerses Bedros XIX TARMOUNI, Patriarch of Cilicia for the Armenians (LEBANON).

- H.E. Most Rev. Fabio SUESCÚN MUTIS, Military Ordinary (COLUMBIA).

- H.E. Most Rev. Joseph Eric D'ARCY, Archbishop Emeritus of Hobart (AUSTRALIA).

- H. Em. Card. José SARAIVA MARTINS, C.M.F., Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints (VATICAN CITY).

- H.E. Most Rev. Justin Francis RIGALI, Archbishop of Saint Louis (United States of America).

- H.E. Most Rev. Tadeusz KONDRUSIEWICZ, Titular Archbishop of Hippo Diarrhytus and Apostolic Administrator of the Northern European Russia of the Latins (RUSSIAN FEDERATION).

- Rev. Fr. Camilo MACCISE, O.C.D., Superior General of the Order of the Discalced Carmelites (UNION OF SUPERIORS GENERAL).

ABelow are the summaries of the interventions:

- H.E. Most Rev. Joachim Phayao MANISAP, Bishop of Nakhon Ratchasima (THAILAND).

The Bishops' Conference of Thailand would like to stress the image of the Bishop as Pastor of a part of the People of God in the perspective of a minister of Communion and Mission. As minister of Communion with God, he participates through grace in the Trinitarian life and mission, and strives to nourish thiscommunion through listening to the Word of God, through prayer and the celebration of the sacraments. Each word and deed in his pastoral service will be a sign of this communion with God, leading others to the same communion. The Bishop should also be a minister of Communion with all other people: the Pope, fellow Bishops, Priests, Deacons, Religious, Laity, people of other religions, as well as those whohave no religious persuasion. He ought to make himself available and accessible as a father, brother, and friend through living a simple life, listening to others andfostering collaboration and responsible delegation.As minister of the Mission of the Church, the Bishop proclaims the Gospel of hope with the authority he has received from Christ to all people, courageously denouncing whatever is against the dignity of the person. As a defender of the poorand promoter of justice and peace, he is a living witness of the CompassionateChrist and accepts the suffering entailed in his mission. To be a minister ofCommunion and Mission is no easy task. Therefore there is a pressing need forongoing formation for Bishops.

[00020-02.04] [in001] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most Rev. Paul Yoshinao OTSUKA, Bishop of Kyoto (JAPAN).

My intervention refers to section. No.132 [number one thirty two] of the Instrumentum Laboris, "Proclamation of the Gospel", which points out, given the situation of society and culture in the modern world, proclamation of the Gospel needs a new language, a new enthusiasm, and new methods. In this century the Church will have much more contact with other religions. In my opinion, for the reasons listed below, as the Church dea1s with diverse cultures and traditions, it will proclaim the truth of the Gospel, using new methods with modem people living according to a secu1ar world view.Since we need a new language and a new way of speaking, I would propose that the Japanese Bishops use their Magisteria1 mandate to introduce new attempts.In February 2001 [two thousand and one], the Japanese Bishops published a document, tit1ed "Reverence of Life".We realize that the Japanese people have a secular outlook of life, so we decided to appea1 to the sacredness of life, and to present Gospel va1ues to them, by demonstrating the various problems life itself encounters in our modern world.This "Reverence for Life" document can be considered a challenge for Catholics of Japan as wen as for Japanese society itself.However, the various themes of the book are not written in a manner that insists that the only correct answer and resolution for problems comes from a Catholic point of view.-The Church presents a message to the reader and in this message the Church itself is thinking a1ong with the reader as he/she decides and ponders about what is a better way of life, a better society.The Bishops further state that their message is rooted in the faith of the Catholic Church and that "we wanted first of all to show the way of life which Christ taught and we hope to inspire others with the life of Christ" (91).According to the teaching of the Gospel, God's Truth does not impose itself on people.This is what Vatican II [two], in its Declaration on Religious Liberty, has to say: "Truth can impose itself on the mind of man only in virtue of its own truth, which wins over the mind with both gentleness and power."During the Jubilee Year, the Holy Father reminds us of this principle, asking God to forgive the sins of the Church, in which there were the sins committed in the Service of Truth.Likewise, the International Theologica1 Commission, comments in "Memory and Reconciliation": "This refers to forms of evangelization that employed improper means to announce the revealed truth, or did not include an evangelical discernment suited to the cultura1 values of the peoples, or did not respect the consciences of the persons to whom the faith was presented.We, Japanese Bishops, recognize the above stated principles in our service of the truth.When we exercise our magisterial mandate, we will conscientiously keep this dia1ogue with people today in mind, and will respect the conscience of those who have heeded the call of the Gospel.Pope John Paul II's [the second's] Encyclical Letter, Redemptoris Missio in No.20 [number twenty] states: "The Church serves the Kingdom by spreading throughout the world the 'Gospel va1ues’ which are an expression of the Kingdom and which help people to accept God s plan."

[00021-02.04] [in002] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most Rev. Javier LOZANO BARRAGÁN, Archbishop, Bishop Emeritus of Zacatecas, President of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care (VATICAN CITY).

Approximately 146 million persons are infected with the HIV/AIDS virus. The Church, with the Bishops leading, have answered this challenge, 25% of those dealing with these sick persons in the entire world belong to the Catholic Church. Today, there are 109,000 Catholic Health Centers, of which 6038 are hospitals where 250,000 religious men and women practice their pastoral activity. Today, serious problems can be seen in the field of the pastoral ministry in hospitals, under the financial aspect as well as the technical and political one, from the aging of the personnel to today’s bioethical questions. Number 141 of the Instrumentum Laboris says that: "organizing and continually promoting pastoral activity in this area are a priority in the heart and life of the Bishop", which is obvious since it pertains to realizing Christ’s mandate in healing the sick. The theme of the present Synod insists on the virtue of Hope. This virtue is a specific characteristic of the Pastoral Ministry of Health, since health is the tendency towards harmony and the only true harmony is Christ’s resurrection. Secularization of today’s world is in contrast with the virtue of hope and because of this requires the decisive witness of the Bishop of a Gospel that testifies the Paschal Event of Christ as the only definitive solution to illness and to death. Christ washed the disciples’ feet at the Last Supper, and because of this the Pastoral Ministry of Health is intimately bound to the Eucharist and to the foundation of the Church. This is a radical proclamation of the Gospel as Hope for Salvation, from suffering, from death. Which does not stop at health as the mere absence of diseases, given that in this way we would be in contradiction with the hope of the mythological reiteration of what exists in the world, rather it consists in the joyous and radical physical, psychological, social and spiritual renewal, which represents the harmonic goal of humanity’s complete Hope expressed in the proclamation of the Gospel: Christ dead and resurrected.

[00022-02.03] [in003] [Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most Rev. Stephen Fumio HAMAO, Archbishop, Bishop Emeritus of Yokohama, President of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of the Migrants and Itinerant People (VATICAN CITY).

In Instrumentum Laboris of the Synod, the theme of pastoral care of the people in transition did not reveal a lot, though we have about 150 million people in the world, and one out of every 47 lives in a migrant or refugee condition. The migrants offer the Church new opportunities to bear witness and proclaim the Gospel at home, and to operate, as an expert in humanity, as a stimulus for civil society in solidarity, in acceptance and in communion.

To improve the welcome of foreigners in the parishes it is indispensable for the Bishops to invest in resources for an adequate professional and spiritual formation of priests, religious, and lay people who need to occupy themselves with the problems of the vast phenomenon of human mobility. In this process the role of the pastoral operators, if well prepared, is fundamental for the awareness of their ecclesiastical community to the welcoming of foreigners, avoiding as much as possible acts of discrimination and intolerance.

There are many faithful who cannot participate in parochial life because of their mobile life or because they are foreigners. The Bishop with pastoral charity, that is the soul of his apostolate, needs to live for God in service of the weakest. This includes the foreigners who do not know the local language or the use of local customs, like migrants, refugees, seamen, civil aviation airport and airline staff, nomads, Circensians, tourists and pilgrims, foreign students. We must not forget not even the women and children victims of drug traffickers and the people who display different forms of xenophobia.

In my opinion it would be useful in the future to promote two types of pastoral care to those in transit, one passing through the churches and another one, with the diligent cooperation of the diocesan or regional pastoral operators, to go and find the migrants and the itinerants in the places where they find their real situation.

[00023-02.06] [ih004] [Original text: Italian]

- H. Em. Card. Pedro RUBIANO SÁENZ, Archbishop of Bogotá (COLUMBIA).

AThe scourge of guerrilla warfare and drug trafficking has put the Church in Colombia in a permanent situation of conflict, so that for many the ministry has become so difficult that it seems to be impracticable. Evangelization thus implies a vocation for martyrdom and in fact we have a long list of martyrs: a Bishop has been murdered by a guerrilla group, another has been kidnapped twice, others have been threatened, and priests, religious and pastoral agents have died in terrorist attacks or in crimes that have remained unpunished. There was the case of a mass kidnapping in the middle of the celebration of the Sunday Eucharist; two priests are in the hands of the guerrillas today.

AIn the midst of the reality of conflict, the Bishop appears as a sign of hope and reconciliation, and a witness of the Gospel in accompanying the people entrusted to him. A brave and credible sign and witness who animates all those whose hope is weakened by violence and kidnapping, overcoming the traditional model of episcopate to be converted into a companion along the path.

APriests in a situation with serious threats to life must have the support and advice of their Bishop; in order to remain firm in the exercise of their ministry and to be protected in extreme situations, the Bishop must often take exceptional measures such as removing them from the diocese and sometimes from the country.

AMassacres and destruction among defenseless populations have multiplied, generating a massive exodus; in these cases the Bishop must be near those affected, and as a sign of hope must make the voice of his community heard before those responsible for these crimes.

AEach Bishop, in his ordination, promises to watch over migrants, a promise which has great resonance today in the face of the drama of the so many displaced faithful.

AThe Bishop as witness of hope must proclaim the truth with courage and clarity, defend life, promote human rights. He must not use the weapons of the mercenary, but those of the Good Shepherd; thus in an area of conflict he is the Minister par excellence of Reconciliation and Forgiveness, who perseveres in Christian love, who loves his enemies and forgives those who persecute us.

Therefore, let us walk with hope, without fear, for we are with the Lord and today’s circumstances require that we not shirk sacrifice. We must always infuse Christian hope. We must be witnesses to the merciful love of the Father who in Christ gives us the absolute assurance of triumphing over evil; we must be docile to the Holy Spirit who transforms us into instruments of peace and reconciliation.

[00024-02.04] [in005] A[Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most Rev. Joseph CHENG TSAI-FA, Bishop of Tainan (TaiwaN).

Drawing inspiration from the humanity of Christ, the bishop, aware of his own weakness and his own limits, must cultivate this spirituality, through the ability of confronting daily reality, the unexpected, personal problems and institutions.

He is subjected to the pressure of daily problems and feels the full weight of it. For this reason he needs to cultivate a serene way of life that favors mental, psychological and emotional equilibrium, through the capability of bringing people with their problems together; in sad or joyous situations his people can always find the maturity and the goodness of a father and spiritual teacher in him.

Therefore, in the exertions of his ministry, the bishop must be united in the Crucified yet Glorious Christ (Cf. Instrumentum laboris no. 55). He must develop in a harmony between the divine and the human and find an equilibrium, by using the same measure as the humanitas of Christ (Cf. Instrumentum laboris no. 56).

We must not neglect the cultivation of human virtue; there is a great need for this! This is what is truly intended when we say that the spirituality of the bishop must be based on the humanity of Christ.

The bishop, as the servant of the Gospel, first must embrace the Good News, live its spirit and bear witness to the Gospel. Furthermore, the bishop needs to be full of zeal to proclaim the Gospel. The bishop himself must be animated by this zeal, to then be able to stimulate his clergy and his faithful.

Another theme I would like to mention is the relationship of culture and inculturation with the proclamation of the Gospel.

In conclusion, we, the Chinese bishops in Taiwan, are anxious to see the Church in China enjoy peace, and, in an atmosphere of religious liberty towards which today’s world tends, the Church in China also may freely proclaim the Gospel. At this time, all of China is celebrating winning the right to hold the World Olympics in 2008. We hope that China may take another step forward in the realization of the Olympic ideal of freedom and equality, and to ensure religious freedom to all, that we may proclaim the Gospel of Christ’s Peace and love to the entire Chinese population.

[00025-02.05] [ih006] [Original text: Italian]

- H.E. Most Rev. Rubén SALAZAR GÓMEZ, Archbishop of Barranquilla (COLUMBIA).

As in Baptism every Christian receives the love of God through the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Bishop, in the sacrament of Ordination, receives the "pastoral charity" of Christ in his heart. The aim of this pastoral charity is to create communion.

 Before converting this love-communion into lines of action, the Bishop must receive it in his own heart and in the heart of the Church Herself, converting it into authentic spirituality. If communion is the expression of the essence of the Church, the spirituality of communion will tend to expand into a true ecclesial spirituality, experienced in the dual dimension of personal and community spirituality, which unceasingly promotes participation and corresponsibility of all the members of the Church and which is at the basis of any other spirituality.

The pastoral commitment of the Bishop will make the Church into an authentic dwelling-place of communion, so that it may be a sign of salvation for the world. The Synod of Bishops must heed the Pope’s call to rethink the Petrine ministry so that the corresponsibility of the Bishops in governing the Universal Church increasingly becomes a deep sign of communion, and that anything that could tarnish this communion may disappear. The same applies to the relationships between the Bishops of a same country in the Episcopal Conferences, in the regions and in the ecclesiastical provinces. It is a matter of attributing the primacy to charity, so that communion prevails over any consideration other than the common good. In each particular Church, the Bishop must make concrete the reality of communion, promoting structures for communion and participation, in order to listen to the Spirit who lives in his people, confirming the people in the same Spirit and leading them to achieving what the Spirit has aroused and confirmed in his Church. This is the great challenge that every Bishop, as pastor of a part of the People of God, has before him.

The Bishop, in building the Church as the dwelling-place and sign of communion, also builds it as a school of communion and an instrument of salvation for the world. In this sense, the Bishop must help the Church follow the concrete paths of human promotion, as the expression of God’s love experienced in communion, creating works expressing solidarity with the poor and those who suffer for any reason, and promoting human cohabitation. These tasks are the concrete way of arousing hope in the world through the Gospel.

Thus, the Bishop, as servant of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, allows the light of the Gospel to permeate all human relationships, both personal and social, and becomes the bearer of hope in the world.

[00026-02.03] [on007] A[Original text: Spanish]

- H.B. Nerses Bedros XIX TARMOUNI, Patriarch of Cilicia for the Armenians (LEBANON).

- H.E. Most Rev. Fabio SUESCÚN MUTIS, Military Ordinary (COLUMBIA).

The Church, full of joy and hope, knows that Christ is the Lord who illuminates all the events of history, and without shunning her mission AAd GentesA and the pastoral attention of those who have solid faith, has highlighted her concern for the New Evangelization.

The Church, which opens to the world, needs bishops willing to evangelize, to pay attention to their vocation as fishermen in the face of the new realities experienced by the world, to set out in search of those who are distant and indifferent, to fish them for Christ and add them to the flock they are grazing. Finally, they should feel in their heart, with renewed enthusiasm, those words which the Lord said to Simon Peter: "Do not be afraid; from now on it is people you will be catching" (cf. Lk 5:10).

The Bishop must take on the leadership and responsibility of evangelizing his Church, facing up to this task and "I should be in trouble if I failed to proclaim the Gospel!" (cf. 1 Cor 9:16), since without him evangelization would not be carried out as an ecclesial priority.

The Pastoral Plan, aimed at evangelization, following the methodology of the Early Church, must proclaim for the Kerigma Christ the Savior to all peoples, inviting them to conversion and gathering them in communities where they may experience being disciples and apostles under the influence of the Holy Spirit.

The aim of the Bishop, priest and evangelized people is to go out to everyone and evangelize them in each of the parishes of the diocese, so that each parish becomes a school for mature Christians and lives as a community formed by small communities, evangelized by Kerigma, catechesis and by fully living the liturgy.

It is a matter of forming adult Christians, capable of seriously committing themselves in the apostolic and social service, with intense solidarity in human promotion and the building of a Christian culture. Only the baptized who bear witness of their faith can transform a hostile society without hope into a society of justice, peace and hope.

The Lord invites us to exercise our episcopal ministry with total and generous enthusiasm, going out to fish in the open seas.

[00027-02.04] [in009] A[Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most Rev. Joseph Eric D'ARCY, Archbishop Emeritus of Hobart (AUSTRALIA).

The work of the Bishop as master-teacher of the faith, especially in catechesis, is often drastically impeded by: (1) widespread assumption in contemporary culture that the Christian faith is not a doctrine, not a truth, but merely an ethos; and (2) within catechetics, a widely accepted "model" which does little justice to the place of doctrine in Catholic education.

Traced back ultimately to Rousseau, the educational model of Dewey penetrated powerfully in Catholic catechetics.

However, important new developments, significantly initiated by Bishops, who were convinced that leadership in this area belonged to their responsibility as master-leader of the doctrinal element of faith-education, are seeing promising results

[00028-02.02] [in010] [Original text: English]

- H. Em. Card. José SARAIVA MARTINS, C.M.F., Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints (Vatican City).

The Novo Millennio Ineunte recalls that "all pastoral initiatives must be set in relation to holiness" (NMI, 30), and therefore, "stressing holiness remains more than ever an urgent pastoral task" (Ibid). The final objective of the Bishop’s pastoral activity is, therefore, inciting the faithful to the commitment to answer, promptly and generously, to the Lord’s calling to Christian perfection.

The most credible and persuasive appeal the members of an ecclesial community may receive pertaining to this is, without a doubt, the very witness of personal holiness of their Shepherds.

This "does not develop along with the ministry, but through the ministry itself", as recalled by the Holy Father last October 7th to the Bishops who had come to Rome to celebrate the Jubilee (cf. L’Osservatore Romano, October 8th 2000), in other words in the plurality of commitments, the unforeseen, the problems a Bishop faces every day.

The personal holiness of the Shepherd is, as reiterated by the Pope to the Bishops ordained the last day of the year: "...the condition for fruitfulness of our ministry as Bishops of the Church..." (cf. L’Osservatore Romano, Friday 6/07/2001 pg. 5).

But for the ministry to be truly effective for sanctity, it must be animated and enlivened by pastoral charity, which is the virtue typical of the Bishop, imitating Christ the "Good" Shepherd. In it, he can find the answer to the fundamental need of unity between interior life and prayer and the many needs of new evangelization; between the contemplation of the face of Christ and the proclamation of the same. "A demand particularly urgent in a socio-cultural and ecclesial context strongly marked by complexity, fragmentation and dispersion" (PDV, 23), like today’s.

Also, pastoral charity urges to a strong commitment to the promotion of the "so-called values of the Kingdom", such as justice, freedom, brotherhood and peace, to attain, as much as possible, a true ‘globalization’ of these selfsame values.

But this cannot suffice, if we do not proclaim that "Christ is the one Mediator between God and mankind" (RMs, 5), the dead and risen Lord is the only Redeemer of man (cf. RH). Therefore, the Mystery of Christ must be announced with new impetus to today’s man. "We must find again the Pentecostal enthusiasm of the announcement... The proclamation of the Gospel is the highest act of love towards man, his freedom and his thirst for happiness" (cf. L’Osservatore Romano, October 8th 2000), the Holy Father recalled to the Bishops who came to Rome to celebrate the Jubilee. Actually, only this way can the Bishop be the transparency of God’s love, the icon of the love of Christ, the Good Shepherd among his people; only this way will he be a servant of the Gospel and a sower of hope.

This is what many of our brothers in the episcopate have done who, in every time and in every place, are sanctified in the exercise of their pastoral ministry. Three of these: Bartholomew of the Martyrs, Archbishop of Braga in Portugal, Giovanni Antonio Farina, Bishop of Treviso and Vicenza in Italy, and Paul Peter Gojdic, Bishop of the Eparchy of Presov in Slovakia, will be beatified next November 4th, while the Bishop of Acqui Giuseppe Marello will be canonized next November 25th.

May their luminous example be for us, the Bishops of the Third Millennium, a reason for hope and a source of apostolic impetus (cf. Instrumentum Laboris, 58).

[00030-02.04] [in012] [Original text: Italian]

- H.E. Most Rev. Justin Francis RIGALI, Archbishop of Saint Louis (United States of America).

There is a remarkable text in the Second Vatican Council that helps us further understand the gift and mystery of the episcopacy. This text gives us a great appreciation of our ontological identity. Lumen Gentium states: "In the Bishops, assisted by the priests, the Lord Jesus is present in the midst of those who believe" (no. 21). Each Bishop is called to understand his vocation as "a living sign of Jesus Christ" (Instrumentum Laboris, 40). This expression of the ontological identity of the Bishop has been further articulated by Pope John Paul II in his teaching on the episcopacy (cf. Address to the Bishops of the United States, September 5th, 1983). In this context, the Holy Father speaks of the various spheres in which the Bishop is "a living sign of Jesus Christ". He is "a sign of the love of Jesus Christ" and "a sign of Christ’s compassion." He is a minister of hope because he is a herald of divine mercy and forgiveness..

The Bishop is likewise "a sign of Christ’s truth" and "a sign of fidelity to the doctrine of the Church". Because he is a sign of fidelity, he must also be, with Jesus, "a sign of contradiction to the world". He can never renounce the preaching of the Cross.

Because he is, like Jesus, a teacher of prayer, the Bishop is called to be "a living sign of the praying Christ".

The Bishop, moreover, is called to be "a sign of the unity of the universal Church" and "a sign of Catholic solidarity". Finally, the Bishop is called to be "a sign of hope for the people of God, as strong and unbreakable as the sign of the Cross, becoming a living sign of the Risen Christ".

Our ontological identity confirms us in our proclaiming the One whom the Apostle Paul calls: "Christ Jesus, our hope" (1 Tim 1:1).


[00031-02.03] [in013] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most Rev. Tadeusz KONDRUSIEWICZ, Titular Archbishop of Hippo Diarrhytus and Apostolic Administrator of the Northern European Russia of the Latins (RUSSIAN FEDERATION).

The last decade has confirmed the saying "ubi episcopus - ibi ecclesia". The bishop has been a sign of hope for the People of God on the Golgotha of the XX century.

Our time shows that the train of the world community could pass by without the participation of the Church, unless the common action of the bishops and the work of the Synod are intensified. Personal interventions by the participants in the Discussion in the Hall should be limited, to extend the working time of the Circuli Minori and to learn from the experience of the Synods of the Eastern Churches, which take concrete decisions, with greater collaboration and trust between the local Churches and the Roman Curia. The sphere of competence of the Episcopal Conferences should be extended, in harmony with the Vatican Dicasteries and the Ministry of Peter.

Thanking the Churches of the various countries for the help given to the Catholics of Russia, I believe it would be useful to develop twinning contacts with the individual dioceses and parishes. At the same time it would be desirable for many programs organized by the Western Churches in Russia to be achieved with the involvement of the local Catholic Church; otherwise, instead of increasing ecumenical and social relationships, further incomprehension and trouble could occur.

The evangelical call "Launch forth!" must become an imperative, rejecting a restricted approach in favor of navigation in the deep waters of collegial responsibility for the destiny of the Church and bringing hope to the world, so that the Church may respond to the challenges of the times and be an increasingly dynamic institution, with great resources of trust, to lead men to holiness.

[00032-02.03] [in014] [Original text: Italian]

- Rev. Fr. Camilo MACCISE, O.C.D., Superior General of the Order of the Discalced Carmelites (UNION OF SUPERIORS GENERAL).

AIn the Church, by the Lord’s will, there are two inseparable and necessary aspects: the institutional aspect and the charismatic aspect. Both are the fruit of the charisms given freely by the Spirit for the good of the community. Charisms are both institutional and non-institutional ministries. They are given for the edification of the Body of Christ. Therefore we cannot attack the institutional aspect in the name of a false spirituality, but neither can we minimize non/institutional charisms in the name of a legal order and organization.

Christian love, which is the greatest of charisms (1 CorA A12:31), becomes the great coordinating principle of all the gifts conveyed by the Spirit. This love leads us to recognize in the charisms of others the real dimensions of our own and never priding yourself on being better than you really are (cf. Rom 12:3). Coordination of the charisms furthermore requires a certain apostolic leadership. Authority in the Church corresponds to judgment on its authenticity and exercise.

AThis coordination and union of the charisms does not rule out contrast and tension between them. Every gift is different. That which one has another cannot have. This is why the practice of charisms involves the cross and suffering. One gift is limited by other gifts. The same Spirit who infuses charisms allows opposition to them for the purification of those who have received them and to enable them to acquire the Paschal dimension, the sign of evangelical authenticity. This is the reason for making the conflicts and tensions less dramatic and for accepting them without bitterness and with an active hope and sense of humor.

AWe must experience a spirituality of tensions and conflict. We must accept the tensions and not create them, admitting that they may be the fruit of our sins. We all must do this: bishops, priests, religious and lay people. "May there be unity in the necessary, freedom in doubt, charity in all". This is why we need dialogue between all the members of the Church.

Charisms and institutions need one another. We have to integrate the tension between these two complementary aspects, so that they may serve the three great dimensions of the Spirit: communion, freedom and parresia, opening up to the "best way of all", the way of love (1 CorA A12:31).

[00033-02.03] [in015] A[Original text: Spanish]



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