Friday, September 24, 2010


Couples for Christ participated in the recently-concluded Congress on Asian Catholic Laity sponsored by the Pontifical Council for the Laity. Held in Seoul, Korea from August 31 to September 5, 2010, the congress was attended by about 400 delegates from 35 international lay associations, ecclesial movements and new communities in 20countries. The congress theme was “Proclaiming Jesus Christ in Asia today.”

During the conference proper, CFC was one of only five associations asked to make a presentation before the body. CFC, among the more than 100 international lay associations recognized by the Vatican, is also the only one that originated in Asia.

Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, in his closing address at the Congress, entitled, “Catholic Laity: Witnesses of Hope for the Good of the People of Asia,” spoke of HOPE as the common denominator of experiences that emerged from the various discussions and testimonies shared at the congress. He said, “This is the hope that the Church and every Christian is called to witness to the world, making it an important service to humanity in our time.”

The Cardinal also exhorted the participants to be mindful of their role as witnesses, particularly since “As we know, Catholics in Asia are a tiny minority, but we are certainly not a timid minority closed in on ourselves. On the contrary, we are a “creative minority”, full of vitality and stimulated by the hope that comes from faith.” He ended with these words: “Dear brothers and sisters, I conclude by making my own the exhortation of the Apostle to the Gentiles: “So, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in him, rooted in him and built upon him and established in the faith as you were taught” (Col 2. 6). The three International Council members present, Joe Tale, Executive Director Joe Yamamoto and International Missions Director Rouquel Ponte, could only marvel at the awesome affirmation – that the Cardinal had chosen the very same Gospel verse that CFC was given as its theme for 2010.

CFC chairman Joe Tale made a 10-minute powerpoint presentation on the evangelization programs of Couples for Christ, a presentation so well received that it made Cardinal Rylko comment, “Couples for Christ, your presentation was excellent!”
Joe Tale called the congress “very affirming” of the evangelization efforts and of the very life and mission of CFC. He shared that during the imposition of the cross necklace, Cardinal Rylko whispered a message for the entire community: “God bless you and all of Couples for Christ.”

Professor Guzman Carriquiry, the Undersecretary of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, also imparted a very affirming message for CFC. During the Friday night fellowship, he informed the three IC members that CFC should no longer worry because the problems the community had in the past were over. When pressed for explanation, he told Rouquel Ponte that the Vatican is aware that CFC is doing good things and is a major force for evangelization, particularly in Asia. He urged CFC to continue doing its mission and not to dwell on the past storms because the mere fact that it was CFC, represented by the International Council, that was invited to the Congress is ample confirmation of its Vatican recognition.

Pics and the rest here.

1 comment:

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