Skip to content

Bishop Clemens' Greeting at Pentecost Vigil

"We Put New Impetus Into Our Future Common Path"

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 5, 2006 (Zenit) - Here is a Vatican translation of the greeting addressed by Bishop Josef Clemens, secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, to the meeting of ecclesial movements and new communities with Benedict XVI. The meeting took place Saturday, vigil of Pentecost, in St. Peter's Square.

* * *

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

I cordially greet all of you here present. You have joyfully and promptly accepted the invitation from Benedict XVI to come to this gathering. The celebration will culminate with the first vespers of the solemnity of Pentecost that we shall pray together with the Holy Father.

I wish to extend a cordial welcome to each one of you, to those of you here close by, but in particular to those of you at the far end of St. Peter's Square and in the Via della Conciliazione. We all know that in a celebration of prayer, like ours today, distances do not matter. What really counts is proximity of hearts, unity, the one faith in God present among us. We recall the promise made by Our Lord: "Where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them" (Matthew 18:20).

I cordially greet the founders and leaders, and all the members and friends of the ecclesial movements and new communities. Thank you all for coming -- from Italy and from all over Europe, and from every part of the world: from Africa, Asia, Oceania and the American continent. Thank you for coming to this second meeting of movements and communities with the Successor of Peter. This is the second meeting. The first one was on that unforgettable Saturday afternoon of the May 30, 1998, with the Servant of God Pope John Paul II here in St. Peter's Square.

Your presence in such great numbers is a great sign of the vitality and youthfulness of the Church. The Church is young, and we can see that today here in St. Peter's Square! The Church is universal and does not distinguish by age or race. All is one, for the Church is truly catholic!

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

In the meditations from the "Roman Triptych" by John Paul II (2003) we find in the second poem entitled "The Source" the following words: "If you want to find the source, you have to go up, against the current."[1]

In this Pentecost vigil, we have come to "confess" here publicly in St. Peter's Square, in all humility and simplicity, yet with frankness and sincerity, that over the past few years we have tried to go up and that many times we have gone against the current. However, we have found the source of living water that satisfies the inexhaustible desire of our hearts, our thirst for truth, for beauty, for happiness.

The source spoken of here is not a theory, nor is it a philosophy or a simple abstract response. It is a person. Benedict XVI says in this regard in the encyclical "Deus Caritas Est": "Being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction."[2]

For this reason, the main purpose of our meeting is gratitude for the multiple gifts received that have helped us to find the source, the living presence of Jesus, "the fairest of the sons of men" (Psalm 45:2).

The prayer of vespers is a privileged moment to give thanks to God for his goodness and for the marvels he has done for us ("Magnalia Dei") in the work of the redemption. We wish to express our deepest gratitude to the Holy Spirit Creator. We also wish to give thanks for those people who were "touched by God." With their testimony of a life lived in faith, they have gone before us to blaze a trail, and they accompany us on our personal paths towards friendship with the Son of God which gives us life and true freedom.

We thank the Lord for the founders, for they listened to the breath of the Holy Spirit. We thank God for the help given to us by our parents, teachers and priests on the path of faith. In particular, we wish to thank Pope John Paul II of happy memory for his teaching and great witness.

The second purpose of our meeting is the renewal of the commitment that Pope John Paul II asked of us eight years ago using these three verbs in the imperative: Open! Accept! Do not forget! That evening he said, or rather, cried out: "Open yourselves meekly to the gifts of the Spirit! Accept gratefully and obediently the charisms which the Spirit never ceases to bestow on us! Do not forget that every charism is given for the common good, that is, for the benefit of the whole Church!"[3]

In this celebration each one of us has the opportunity to examine our conscience. How have we responded to these three assignments given to us by a true father who loves us very much? We can ask ourselves: How have we opened ourselves to the Holy Spirit? Have we accepted his charisms? Have we kept in mind the common good of the entire Church? We can ask ourselves as a "community of faith" on a new stage on the path of "ecclesial maturity" opened up by Pope John Paul II eight years ago.

This evening let us take the words of Benedict XVI that mark our encounter: "There is nothing more beautiful than to be surprised by the Gospel, by the encounter with Christ. There is nothing more beautiful than to know him and to speak to others of our friendship with him."[4]

With the help of the Holy Spirit we put new impetus, new energy and new creativity into our future common path together!

Again, I wish to thank you all for your presence here, for your missionary engagement, and above all, for your fidelity to the gift of faith in Jesus Christ, and your fidelity to the Successor of Peter who wishes to confirm us in this faith.

A most sincere welcome to you all!

* * *

1. Pope John Paul II, "Roman Triptych: Meditations," Libreria Editrice Vaticana, Vatican City, 2003

2. Benedict XVI, encyclical letter "Deus Caritas Est," Libreria Editrice Vaticana, Vatican City, 2005, No. 1

3. Pope John Paul II, "Address on the occasion of the encounter with the ecclesial movements and new communities" in "Movements in the Church," edited by the Pontifical Council for the Laity, Vatican Press, 1999, p. 221-222

4. Benedict XVI, Homily, "Inauguration of the Pontificate," April 24, 2005

[Translation issued by the Pontifical Council for the Laity; adapted]


Catholic Online CA, US
Catholic Online - Publisher, 661 869-1000



Pentecost, Clemens, Laity, Council, Pontifical

More Catholic PRWire

Showing 1 - 50 of 4,718

A Recession Antidote
Randy Hain

Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

The Why of Jesus' Death: A Pauline Perspective
Jerom Paul

A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell

My Dad
JoMarie Grinkiewicz

Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell

Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Catholic Online

Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Catholic Online

Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
Catholic Online

State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Catholic Online

Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
Catholic Online

2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Catholic Online

Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Catholic Online

Franchising to Evangelize
Catholic Online

Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Catholic Online

Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Catholic Online

Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Catholic Online

Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Catholic Online

Full Circle
Robert Gieb

Three words to a deeper faith
Paul Sposite

Relections for Lent 2009
chris anthony

Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell

World Food Program Director on Lent
Catholic Online

Moral Clarity

Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Catholic Online

A Prayer for Monaco: Remembering the Faith Legacy of Prince Rainier III & Princess Grace and Contemplating the Moral Challenges of Prince Albert II
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe

Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Sally Connolly

Glimpse of Me
Sarah Reinhard

The 3 stages of life
Michele Szekely

Sex and the Married Woman
Cheryl Dickow

A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Cheryl Dickow

Modernity & Morality
Dan Shea

Just a Minute
Sarah Reinhard

Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Hugh McNichol

Edging God Out
Paul Sposite

Burying a St. Joseph Statue
Cheryl Dickow

George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Catholic Online

Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell

Action Changes Things: Teaching our Kids about Community Service
Lisa Hendey

Easter... A Way of Life
Paul Spoisite

Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Hugh McNichol

Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Hugh McNichol

Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Catholic Online

Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Catholic Online

Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Catholic Online

Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Catholic Online

Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Catholic Online

Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
Catholic Online

Holy Saturday...anticipation!
Hugh McNichol

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Learn about Catholic world

Catholic Online
Inform - Inspire - Ignite

Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained

Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need

Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online

Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye

Daily Reading
Today's bible reading

Lent / Easter
Death & resurrection of Jesus

Advent / Christmas
Birth of Jesus

Rest of Catholic Online
All Catholic world we offer

Products and services we offer

Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books

The California Network
Inspiring streaming service

Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on

Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel

Catholic Online Singles
Safe, secure Catholic dating

The California Studios
World-class post production service

Learn the Catholic way

Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all

Student Classes
K-12 & Adult Education Classes

School Teachers
Teacher lesson plans & resources

Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education

Connect with us online

Catholic Online on Facebook
Catholic social network

Catholic Online on Twitter
Catholic Tweets

Catholic Online on YouTube
Enjoy our videos

Catholic Online on Instagram
Shared Catholic moments

Catholic Online on Pinterest
Catholic ideas style inspiration

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2018 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2018 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.