The Vision of Nathanael

From the beginning, Nathanael has embraced and promoted the guiding principles of the Second Vatican Council that called upon all the baptized to cooperate in the mission of the Church. In 1970, Pope Paul VI said it this way: “One of the truths most strongly asserted by the Council is as follows – All Christians are called to participate in the mission of the Church; an invitation as well as an obligation. For this reason there should be no passive Christians in the mystic Body of Christ. Each and everyone must collaborate in different ways, but through shared responsibility, to the apostolic work of the Church”.[1]

To achieve this, the Council emphasizes that “priests must recognize and promote the dignity and responsibility of lay people in the Church, willingly take into account their wise counsel, assign them to positions of trust in the service of the Church, give them leeway in the tasks that they take on, and even encourage them to undertake new projects on their own.”[2]

Following the Council, popes started talking about the new evangelization. In his encyclical Redemptoris missio, John-Paul II declared the urgency of missionary evangelization stating that, in today’s world, “it is the primary service that the Church must provide to every person and to humanity as a whole”. He urged the Church to commit totally to the new evangelization: “No believer in Christ, no Church institution should neglect this important duty - to proclaim Christ to all people”. The work of evangelization, he adds, “concerns all Christians, all dioceses and parishes, all institutions and ecclesiastic organizations”.[3]

The Nathanael Program will be offered again with a new missionary perspective while maintaining its established focus on the shared responsibility for the mission, the discernment of charisms, the spirit of communion, and service to those in need.

 

[1] Paul VI, General Audience August 11, 1971, Co-responsibility of the laity in the mission of the Church: no passive Christians, No. 46

[2] Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, No. 37

[3] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter, Redemptoris Missio, 1990, Nos. 2-3

 

Director of Nathanael and Coordinator of the Anglophone Sector                  

Lillian Ćulumović

Telephone: 204-594-0276

Email: lculumovic@archsaintboniface.ca

 

Adult Faith Formation