Friday, January 20, 2012

Benedict XVI: approves celebrations of Christian initiation of the Neocatechumenal Way

The Vatican has approved the Liturgy of the ceremonies for the Christian initiation of the Neocatechumenal Way. It came during an emotional meeting with Kiko Argüello and 7,000 Neocatechumenals. The pope explained the features of the new decree.

Benedict XVI
“This approval is another element that shows how the Church accompanies you with patient care in a discernment which guards your wealth but also guards the communion and the internal harmony of the whole Church.”

Together with Kiko were the other international leaders Carmen Hernandez and Mario Pezzi. Also in attendance were 5 cardinals and 50 bishops.

The pope then announced that 18 Neocatechumenal families would be sent to places that have been 'dechristianized'. Each of them will be accompanied by a priest to help them evangelize. They will soon be leaving for the country of Gabon in Africa, the French Riviera in Marseille and Venezuela.

Benedict XVI
“One hundred families are going to twelve Missions ad gentes. I invite you not to fear, he who takes the Gospel is never alone.”

Kiko thanked the pope for all the support he has given. He explained that the Way helps those who with no exposure to the Church to know God and grow in faith.

Kiko Argüello
Neocatechumenal Way
“The approved celebrations have a huge strength. Imagine them being held in Africa, Madagascar, or with the aborigines. We have experienced this tremendous force: gestation, creating a new man. Today the Church approves these celebrations with all its historical significance for the Way.”

The origin of the Neocatechumenal Way dates back to 1964, when it arose in a slum of Madrid. Today it's present in 100 countries and about 6,000 parishes.

“We joined the Way in March last year and then we came here because the Lord has called us. With my family, my daughter, the brothers in the community, and with my wife.”

During the meeting, the songs 'Sword' and 'Resurrexit' were performed by the Neocatechumenal Symphony Orchestra as a special gift for the pope.