Aparecida 211-212: The Mission of the Laity

Continuing with the Aparecida bishops’ thoughts on and for the laity, we read of our role in the mission of the Gospel. Primarily, we live as Christian disciples, and offer our lives as a witness to Christ. Following that, there are our roles in various endeavors of the Church, namely evangelization, liturgy, and particular apostolates.

211. Lay people are also called to participate in the Church’s pastoral action, first by the witness of their lives, and second, by actions in the field of evangelization, liturgical life, and other forms of apostolate, according to local needs under the guidance of the shepherds. The latter shall be willing to open spaces for them to participate and to entrust them with ministries and responsibilities in a Church where all live out their Christian commitment responsibly.

What do you suppose “actions … in liturgical life” means? My sense would be active participation, at minimum. Next, to know the liturgy as a formative element for prayer as well as those “other forms of apostolate.”

Affirmation for lay ministers:

We commend catechists, delegates of the Word, and leaders of communities who are doing magnificent work within the Church,(Cf. Lumen Gentium 31, 33; Gaudium et Spes 43; Apostolicam Actuositatem 2) and we encourage them to continue the commitment that they acquired in Baptism and Confirmation.

… and for lay formation:

212. In order to carry out their mission with pastoral responsibility, lay people need a solid doctrinal, pastoral, and spiritual formation and proper support to give witness to Christ and to the values of the Kingdom in the realm of social, economic, political and cultural life.



For deeper examination, an English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in 2007 Aparecida document, bishops, evangelization and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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