As we’ve done with other sets of proposals, there are many. Perhaps too many to tackle in one post. We’ll look at eleven proposals for urban ministry today and through the weekend. There are significant challenges as Latin American and Caribbean societies become more urban. Let’s see what the Aparecida bishops say about the opportunities presented.
517. Recognizing and expressing gratitude for the renewing work now being done in many cities, the Fifth General Conference proposes and recommends a new urban ministry to:
a) Respond to the great challenges of increasing urbanization.
The bishops are concerned about the poor, certainly, but they will not want to neglect poking at the consciences of the rich, not the opportunities to steer people away from corruption:
b) Be able to serve the varied and complex social, economic, political, and cultural categories: poor, middle class, and elite.
These look like Ignatian-supported values:
c) Develop a spirituality of gratitude, mercy, fraternal solidarity, proper attitudes of one who loves disinterestedly and seeks no recompense.
A note of optimism:
d) Be open to new experiences, styles and languages that can incarnate the gospel in the city.
Some believers see the path to fruitful Christianity lies in the wilderness–getting away from the temptations of the city. The bishops south of our border continue a positive outlook on the opportunities where many people live close together.
For deeper examination, an English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.