Tag Archives: ecclesial communities

Pope Francis meets with ecumenical partners and representatives of world religions

The Pope met today with Orthodox leaders, Byzantine and Oriental Orthodox, the Anglicans, other ecclesial communities and leaders of various other religions. Of particular interest is the personal meeting of Francis and Bartholomew; the Pope also met with Metropolitan Hilarion of the Russian Orthodox Church.


Rome Reports has a review of this important ecumenical meeting.


Francis and Bartholomew March 20 2013.jpg

First of all, heartfelt thanks for what my Brother Andrew told us. Thank you so much! Thank you so much!

It is a source of particular joy to meet you today, delegates of the Orthodox Churches, the Oriental Orthodox Churches and Ecclesial Communities of the West. Thank you for wanting to take part in the celebration that marked the beginning of my ministry as Bishop of Rome and Successor of Peter.

Yesterday morning, during the Mass, through you , I recognized the communities you represent. In this manifestation of faith, I had the feeling of taking part in an even more urgent fashion the prayer for the unity of all believers in Christ, and together to see somehow prefigured the full realization of full unity which depends on God’s plan and on our own loyal collaboration.

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Chaput says Catholic life needs to be reignited; American culture is a new kind of mission territory

Philadelphia archbishop and Capuchin friar Charles J. Chaput writes well about the sobering reality of evangelization in his weekly column for this week. (Get in the habit of reading the Archbishop’s weekly essay.) The content of His Excellency’s essay “The new communities and the ‘New Evangelization‘” has “three simple things today: first, I’ll share some observations on the general state of the Church; second, I’ll talk about the role of new communities and charisms like the Sodalitium in the new evangelization; and third, I’ll offer some thoughts to this group as a brother in consecrated life, based on my own experience as a Capuchin and a bishop. I have a fourth point to mention as well; but it’s really more of a story. I’ll come back to it at the end of my remarks.”

Among the remarks of the archbishop’s are those he talks about the new communities, sometimes called the ecclesial communities. Each group has it’s own gift to give to the life of the Church. Each community answers a need and helps a person to be faithful to the Gospel in a new, vital way: a manner of really living the Good News and recognizing the grace of God right now.

Real Christian discipleship rejects and resists the kind of radical personal license and acquisitiveness that animates a consumerist society.  So when the Catholic Church teaches about the dignity of the unborn child, the purpose of human sexuality, economic and immigration justice, the rights of religious communities and believers, and the

nature of marriage and the family – she’s not just “unpopular.”  She’s hated as the enemy of individual privacy and personal freedom.  And that theme shapes the way the Church is treated in the mass media.

For Catholics in my country to recover their vocation as a Church, they need to be awakened; they need a reason to be zealous again about their faith.  They need to hear the witness of people like yourselves who live the Catholic faith with confidence and joy.  They need to see their Church growing and fruitful, and young again, instead of constantly retreating and in decline.

This is the value of the new ecclesial communities and movements.  They’re alive in Jesus Christ, and their new life and energy spill out into the whole Church.

For those of us who follow/live within the ambit of an ecclesial community whose founder is dead, what we compromise on? What will sacrifice to fit into the culture at large? Will we lose touch with the reasons that was the impulse of the founding of our community? Answer: may be; but I hope not.

Read the essay –it won’t take you long.

Our Lady, Star of the New Evangelization, pray for us.

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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