VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2011 (VIS) – Following this morning’s Mass for the closure of an international meeting on the new evangelisation, Benedict XVI prayed the Angelus with faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square. In his remarks he recalled how Blessed John Paul II had been “both a strong supporter of the mission ‘ad gentes’ (that is, the mission to peoples and lands where the Gospel has not yet put down firm roots), and a herald of the new evangelisation. These are both aspects of the one mission of the Church and it is important to consider them together during this month of October, characterised by the celebration of World Mission Day which falls next Sunday”.
The Holy Father then went on to speak of the “Year of Faith” he had announced during his homily this morning, the motivations, goals and guiding principles of which are to be announced in a forthcoming Apostolic Letter. “Paul VI also called a ‘Year of Faith'”, he said, “to mark the nineteenth centenary of the martyrdom of the Apostles Peter and Paul in 1967, a period of great cultural upheaval. Half a century after the opening of Vatican Council II, associated with the happy memory of Blessed John XXIII, I feel it is appropriate to recall the beauty and importance of the faith, and the need to strengthen and intensify in individuals and communities; and to do this not so much in a perspective of celebration as of mission, in the perspective of the mission ‘ad gentes’ and of the new evangelisation”.
ANG/ VIS 20111017 (270)