2013 Pentecost Message for Canadian Catholic National Movements and AssociationsWednesday, May 15 2013
And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house . . . . All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 2.2,4).
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In his address to the ecclesial movements and new communities at Pentecost 1998, Blessed Pope John Paul expressed his conviction that such groups are the fruit of a new Pentecost:
You, present here, are the tangible proof of the outpouring of the Spirit. Each movement is different from the others, but they are all united in the same communion and for the same mission. Some charisms given by the Spirit burst in like an impetuous wind, which seizes people and carries them to new ways of missionary commitment to the radical service of the Gospel, by ceaselessly proclaiming the truths of the faith, accepting the living stream of the truth as a gift instilling in each person an ardent desire for holiness.
These words are most fitting as we extend to you our heartfelt appreciation for your ongoing participation in the mission of the Church, a true share in the life of Christ.
In the course of this Year of Faith, we have received an abundant outpouring of the Spirit’s gift in the election of the first successor of Peter from the Americas. On the day after his election, Pope Francis delivered his first homily to the College of Cardinals, focusing on three essential dimensions of discipleship: walking, building, and witnessing. He stressed that whatever our call and station in life, if we are not first disciples of Jesus Christ who live the mystery of his cross, then we have missed the point. This, and no other, is the path to the holiness of life which is our gift and task through baptism.
Throughout the life of the Church, movements and associations of the faithful have responded to the Spirit’s gift to live the Gospel in meeting the diverse needs of the Church and of the world. It is our sincere hope and our deep prayer this Pentecost that by the Spirit’s gift, the members of your associations and movements might share in the grace of walking by faith, building in hope, and witnessing to love.
Standing Committee for Relations with Movements and Associations
Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops