18 February 2020

Investing in the formation of the laity is a priority for the Church today

Cardinal Farrell in Spain for the National Congress of the Laity

From 14 to 16 February, the Spanish bishops’ conference’s Commission for the Secular Apostolate held its National Congress for the Laity in Madrid, on the theme of “The People of God reaching out.” The meeting brought together over two thousand members of the Congress to reflect and continue a dialogue on the formation of the laity, as part of a three-year project which will conclude next year.

The beginning of the Conference was marked by the reading of a message from Pope Francis, in which he called to mind that “we are the People of God, invited to live the faith, not in an individual and isolated way, but in community, as a people beloved and dear to God. We belong to Him, and this implies not only being incorporated into Him through baptism, but also living in a way consistent with this gift we have received.”

Likewise, Cardinal Kevin Farrell, Prefect of the Dicastery, who was present at the Congress, insisted in his introductory speech that “the formation of the laity must be ‘complete’; that is, it cannot be limited only to theoretical formation or academic courses, but must also include formation ‘in the field.’ The involvement of the laity in the life of the Church and their ‘missionary outreach’ both require a serious commitment to providing them with adequate formation. Investing in the formation of the laity is a priority for the Church today.”

At the close of the first day of the conference, Cardinal Farrell presided at the adoration vigil, inviting each of the participants to be “the salt of the earth and the light of the world,” welcoming Jesus into their hearts.

For this Congress, the Commission has prepared a questionnaire document, working for an entire year with groups of young people, families, movements, catechists, and teachers, gathering reflections and suggestions which summarize and reflect all the riches of the Church.

Information on the Congress: www.pueblodediosensalida.com.