This topic is termed, “All the Laity Are Missionaries by Baptism.” Do you believe it? Pope John Paul II and his three predecessors all touched on the notion:
Recent popes have stressed the importance of the role of the laity in missionary activity.(Cf. Pius XII, Encyclical Letter Evangelii Praecones; Encyclical Letter Fidei Donum; John XXIII, Encyclical Letter Princeps Pastorum; Evangelii Nuntiandi 70-73) In the Exhortation Christifideles Laici, I spoke explicitly of the Church’s “permanent mission of bringing the Gospel to the multitudes – the millions and millions of men and women – who as yet do not know Christ the Redeemer of humanity,” (Christifideles Laici 35) and of the responsibility of the lay faithful in this regard.
When too much focus is given to the “professional” ministry of evangelization, the responsibility of ordinary lay people can be neglected. Curious that, especially since the very first missionary was so fruitful, and so early in the Gospel narrative of Saint John.
The mission ad gentes is incumbent upon the entire People of God. Whereas the foundation of a new church requires the Eucharist and hence the priestly ministry, missionary activity, which is carried out in a wide variety of ways, is the task of all the Christian faithful.
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