Paragraphs 201 through 204 address Pastors, inspirers of a community of missionary disciples. This is something which most pastors of North America might agree: we need to inspire people; we need to form intentional disciples. The sad truth is that administrative and other concerns overwhelm the impulse to inspire people.
As a lay minister entering my thirtieth year of service, I can tell you fatigue often overcomes my ardent intentions. And it’s way easier to receive those who come rather than seek out those absent.
What do you pastors in the readership think of this:
201. Parish renewal requires new attitudes in pastors and in the priests who are in its service. The ﬁrst requirement is that the pastor be an authentic disciple of Jesus Christ, because only a priest in love with the Lord can renew a parish. But he must likewise be an ardent missionary who lives in constant yearning to seek out those who are separated and is not satisﬁed with mere administration.
The bishops here have drawn out the difference between a pastor who is a maintenance man and one who is committed to renewal.
Though this section seems titled for “pastors” as we move into the next few paragraphs, we’ll notice the bishops have widened their focus to parishes, committees, and the family. Meanwhile, any comments?
For deeper examination, an English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.