February 24, 2000
volume 11, no. 39

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    Today we bring you the Holy Father's Angelus message from this past Sunday in which he extolled the virtues and responsibilities of the deaconate while celebrating the Jubilee for Deacons over the weekend. He emphasized the importance of this singular vocation within Holy Mother Church and called upon all faithful to work in union with one another through the grace fo the Holy Spirit to fulfill Christ's words in Mark 16: 15, ..."to preach the gospel to the ends of the earth." During the same Angelus the Pope announced the immediate Jubilee celebration for the Roman Curia which John Paul II called a "family of Curia to Peter's Successor" and "a permanent Cenacle." The full English text was translated and provided by ZENIT news agency ZE00022020.

The Holy Father's Angelus Message from Sunday, February 20, 2000
The Church's Permanent Deacons: Collaborators in the work of salvation

    Dearest Brothers and Sisters!

    1. The celebrations of the Jubilee of Permanent Deacons, organized by the Congregation for the Clergy, conclude today. First of all, I wish to greet warmly the numerous Deacons who have come to Rome from the whole world, together with their families, for this special event. I particularly greet you, dear brothers, who received the ordination to the diaconate this morning in the Vatican Basilica.

        The presence of all of you is very pleasing to me, because it also gives me the opportunity to emphasize the importance of the role that is proper to you: with the sacramental ordination, the Deacon assumes a singular "diakonía," which is expressed above all in service to the Gospel. During the rite, the consecrating Bishop pronounces these words: "Receive the Gospel of Christ, of which you now become a herald. Believe in what you read, teach what you believe, live what you teach." Here is your mission, dear brothers: to embrace the Gospel, to go deeper in faith into the message, to love it and give witness to it in words and works. The task of the new evangelization requires from you a contribution made with coherence and dedication, courage and generosity, in the daily service of the liturgy, the word, and charity. You deacons, called in celibacy to a life totally dedicated to God and His Kingdom, live your mission joyfully and faithfully! Married deacons, whom Christ calls to be models of real love in the heart of family life, live your mission! The Lord has chosen you and the others as His collaborators in the work of salvation.

    2. Next Tuesday, together with all my collaborators, I will have the joy of celebrating the Jubilee of the Roman Curia. This has been preceded by meetings of reflection and prayer, through which those who make up the Curia have prepared themselves to live this moment of grace, which invites them to a conversion of heart, with special intensity. How many give their services to the Holy See -- Cardinals, Archbishops, Bishops, priests, men and women religious and the laity! Together they will cross the Holy Door, which is a symbol of mercy and a call to the renewal of life.

        A very close tie links the family of the Curia to Peter's Successor, who makes use of its service in the exercise of the ministry entrusted to him by Christ for the benefit of the entire ecclesial community. Therefore, in addition to the capacity and efficiency of his collaborators, it is important that he be able to count on their communion in a love so profound so as to make of the Curia, as Pope Paul VI often said, "a permanent Cenacle," totally consecrated to the good of the Church. The purification that the Jubilee experience looks to will not fail to make its positive contribution in this respect.

    3. I entrust all my collaborators of the Curia to the Virgin Mary, as also the Permanent Deacons and other members of the ecclesial community: may Most Holy Mary intercede so that the harmonious fusion of all the energies present in the People of God may always make the work that the Church carries out in the world for the salvation of humanity more effective.


February 17, 2000
volume 10, no. 34

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