Ecclesiae Sanctae III 4-5: Promotion of the Missionary Spirit

In 1966, the Church was concerned about how to promote “the missionary spirit,” and so these concrete ideas were surfaced:

4. A priest should be appointed in each diocese for the effective promotion of missionary undertakings, and he should be a member of the pastoral council of the diocese. (Ad Gentes 38)

5. To promote the missionary spirit, seminarians and young people in Catholic organizations should be encouraged to establish and maintain contact with seminarians and similar organizations in mission lands, so that an exchange of knowledge may foster among the Christian people a missionary and ecclesial awareness. (Ad Gentes 38)


I’m not sure that a member of the clergy is the best solution in every diocese. It would seem that a religious or lay person, probably someone with the charism of the missionary apostolate and/or an understanding of evangelization, would be ideal.

It’s interesting that such a person would be part of the deliberative body of a diocese. I’m not disagreeing with the directive. I’m not sure how it has worked out for dioceses that have tried this, or why other dioceses never appointed such a person. Is a diocesan pastoral council the best location for such a person to interface with the clergy and evangelical ministers of a diocese? Just asking.

More questions:

Do American seminaries cultivate the contact with seminaries in other countries?

Among lay people, are there contact points school to school, music group to music group, charity to charity, and such along ministry or service lines? Does World Youth Day promote these contacts? Again, I have no experience with any of this; just asking.



About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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