Greeting from the President of the Apostolic Movement
To the Speaker His Excellency Most Reverend Msgr. Filippo Santoro
metropolitan archbishop of Taranto
(Rome, Conciliation Auditorium – May 27, 2015)
Most Reverend Excellencies, adhering members of the Movement, all of you gathered here, I address you, in my personal name and that of the Inspirer and Founder of the Apostolic Movement, a sincere and cordial welcome to our VII National Convention, entitled “The joy of the Gospel source of the new humanism”. In this meeting we want to experience once again the joy of walking together, of renewing with ever new enthusiasm, the commitment and joy of proclaiming and reminding the Gospel that is Jesus. The Holy Father Francis reminds the whole Church of this. He, who already in the first words of his apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, states: “The joy of the gospel fills the heart and the whole life of those who meet with Jesus. Those who let themselves be saved by him are freed from sin, from sadness, from inner emptiness and from isolation. With Jesus Christ, joy is always born and reborn”.
From the Word of faith we know that the initiative of encounter and love always come from God, who loves us and calls us to communion of life with himself. Let each of us, as the Pope still maintains, in whatever place and situation he may be, be met by Jesus, renew his personal encounter with him, his alliance of faith and love, today. In our 2007 National Convention, it was already affirmed that Jesus is the new Man and if one is in Him he is certainly a new creature. This is the new humanism: being and living in Jesus Christ. In this regard, I would like to underline how the theme of our meeting is in unison with that of the next National Ecclesial Convention, the 5th of the series, which will be celebrated in November in Florence, whose title is: “In Jesus Christ the new humanism”. In the Track for the journey towards the Congress, the Italian Bishops, paraphrasing a sentence from an ancient Christian writing, affirm that man comes from the depths of God, one could say that he is kneaded with Him:
it is the peculiar awareness of Christian humanism , a humanism with a clear transcendent vocation. Precisely in order to awaken this strong divine imprint in man, the mission of reminding the Gospel to every man, considering the concrete historical and social solicitations, is important. Hence the urgency of a renewed proclamation in the Spirit, in the motivations, in the ardor and also in the forms. An announcement that makes the Word of Jesus credible, which in turn becomes a great help for Christians more committed to ecclesial life and a new stimulus for the slightly lukewarm faithful and for those who are beginning the journey of faith. A new joy of great spiritual fruitfulness can and must spring for our society, by now, increasingly plural and complex, from the evangelizing action of the ecclesial community. The new man, born of the Gospel and the Spirit, gives meaning to the human world and to all its expressions, from intergenerational to family relationships, from mutual acceptance to the gift of self, through the many manifestations of solidarity and human promotion.
To you, Excellency Msgr. Santoro, our heartfelt thanks for having accepted to be present at this Convention. We will gladly welcome what you tell us. We want to make our own the words of good wishes that you addressed to your Church for 2015: “A too human look at the past, once again would be fraught with discouragement; while a look of faith leads us to thank the Lord for so much good that exists in the Church, in society and offers us the opportunity to walk the path of conversion and hope, so that we ourselves can become instruments of change and improvement” .
To you, Msgr. Bertolone, our filial affection in Christ and in the Virgin Mary. Your presence at our assemblies is a reason for joy; as our Pastor you confirm us in the truth and in ecclesial communion. My thanks again to all people present. May Lord Jesus and the Mother of the Redemption bless, protect and accompany the journey of the Church.
Rome, May 27, 2015
The President of the Apostolic Movement