Wednesday, May 3, 2006

Threefold Mission of the Apostles--Pope at GA

From Asia News Italy:

"The mandate conferred by Jesus on the Apostles was transmitted by them to their successors. Beyond the experience of their personal contact with Jesus, a unique and irreplaceable experience, the Apostles passed on to their successors the solemn sending to the world by their Teacher. Apostle comes from the Greek word ‘apostéllein’, that means to send; they are those who were sent by the Lord. The apostolic sending, that is revealed in the text of Mt 28:19ff, implies three elements: a pastoral service (‘make disciples of all the nations’), liturgical (‘baptise them’…) and prophetic (‘teach them to observe all I have taught you’). A triple service guaranteed by the nearness of the Lord until the end of time (‘See, I am with you all the days until the end of the world’). Through the apostolic ministry, it is Christ himself who reaches he who is called to faith. The distance over centuries is overcome by the Risen Lord who offers himself alive and working for us, in the present of the Church and the world." The pope ended off the cuff: "He is truly always with us and he gives us life, the road towards the future."