The Year of Consecrated Life

Pope Francis released a letter for the Year of Consecrated Life on the Feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  The Year of Consecrated Life started last 30th of November 2014 and will conclude on the 2nd of February 2016, the Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple.

To quote from the letter of the Holy Father:
"I am writing to you as a brother who, like yourselves, is consecrated to God. Together let us thank the Father, who called us to follow Jesus by fully embracing the Gospel and serving the Church, and poured into our hearts the Holy Spirit, the source of our joy and our witness to God's love and mercy before the world."
"I decided to proclaim a Year of Consecrated Life on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium, which speaks of religious in its sixth chapter, and of the Decree Perfectae Caritatis on the renewal of religious life."
"May this Year of Consecrated Life also be an occasion for confessing humbly, with immense confidence in the God who is love (cf.1 Jn 4:8), our own weakness and, in it, to experience the Lord's merciful love. May this Year likewise be an occasion for bearing vigorous and joyful witness before the world to the holiness and vitality present in so many of those called to follow Jesus in the consecrated life."
"The question we have to ask ourselves during this Year is if and how we too are open to being challenged by the Gospel; whether the Gospel is truly the "manual" for our daily living and the decisions we are called to make. The Gospel is demanding: it demands to be lived radically and sincerely. It is not enough to read it, nor is it enough to meditate on it. Jesus asks us to practice it, to put his words into effect in our lives."
"Once again, we have to ask ourselves: Is Jesus really our first and only love, as we promised he would be when we professed our vows? Only if he is, will we be empowered to love, in truth and mercy, every person who crossed our path. For we will have learned from Jesus the meaning and practice of love. We will be able to love because we have his own heart."
"The creativity of charity is boundless; it is able to find countless new ways of bringing the newness of the Gospel to every culture and every corner of society. The Year of Consecrated Life challenges us to examine our fidelity to the mission entrusted to us."
"Be men and women of communion! Have the courage to be present in the midst of conflict and tension, as a credible sign of the presence of the  Spirit who inspires in human hearts a passion for all to be one (cf. Jn !7:21). Live the mysticism of encounter, which entails "the ability to hear, to listen to other people; the ability to seek together ways and means'. Live in the light of the loving relationship of the three divine Persons (cf. 1 Jn 4:8), the model for all interpersonal relationships."
"Do not yield to the temptation to see things in terms of numbers and efficiency, and even less to trust in your own strength. Fundamentally, the strength of the Church is living by the Gospel and bearing witness to our faith. The Church is the salt of the earth; she is the light of the world. She is called to make present in society the leaven of the Kingdom of God and she does this primarily by her witness, her witness of brotherly love, of solidarity and of sharing with others."
"Radical evangelical living is not only for religious: it is demanded of everyone."
"You will find life by giving life, hope by giving hope, love by giving love."
"I wish to speak not only to consecrated persons, but also to the laity, who share with them the same ideals, spirit and mission. I urge you, as laity, to live this Year for Consecrated Life as a grace which can make you more aware of the gift you yourselves have received. The Year for Consecrated Life concerns not only consecrated persons, but the entire Church."
"I entrust this Year of Consecrated Life to Mary, the Virgin of listening and contemplation, the first disciple of her beloved Son. Let us look to her, the highly-beloved daughter of the Father, endowed with every gift of grace, as the unsurpassed model for all those who follow Christ in love of God and service to their neighbour."
(Pope Francis)

We give thanks to God for the religious men and women doing their ministry of evangelization across our Diocese with their testimony of faith, holiness and love.
Father Reynold


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