Missionary Disciples Going Forth with Joy - National Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministry
On June 16, 2023, the US bishops approved a National Pastoral Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministry. The Plan refers to Hispanics/Latinos as a blessing from God, as a missionary and prophetic presence that revitalizes the church in the United States. A few of these graces include an abiding love for family and community, a rich practice of Catholic traditions, an authentic Marian devotion, and vibrant ecclesial movements.
For the past four decades, Hispanic/Latino ministry has flourished in thousands of parishes across the country. Such ministries have produced many fruits as millions of Hispanic/Latino families have been able to live and celebrate their Catholic faith. Building on that growth, the Plan calls for a synodal church that is more welcoming, evangelizing, and missionary at all levels; a church that can build vibrant parish communities with our Hispanic/Latino brothers and sisters, in the context of a culturally diverse society.
The Plan is designed to further strengthen ministries among our Hispanic/Latino brothers and sisters over the next ten years. It also strives to redouble the church's efforts to mentor, form, and embrace a new generation of Hispanic/Latino leaders as missionary disciples ready to serve the entire church and the society.
It is important to note that the Pastoral Plan is addressed to all church leaders, and everybody is invited to participate in its implementation. Also important is the Plan's call for all leaders in the church to become more interculturally competent. That is, to have the capacity to communicate, work and relate with people from other cultures. Intercultural competency involves gaining knowledge, developing skills, and adopting an attitude of openness and respect for people from other cultures.
Let's continue walking together in building the beloved community of missionary disciples that Jesus calls us to be. The invitation to participate in the Plan provides a unique opportunity to engage and form new leaders, invigorate parishes, and multiply creative pastoral responses to the growing Hispanic/Latino presence in all Catholic institutions and organizations.
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