VATICAN - Missionary world at the opening of the Council: even in 1962 Mission Day was on October 21

Friday, 19 October 2012

Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - In October 1962, when the Second Vatican Council opened, World Mission Day was celebrated on Sunday, October 21, the same date as this year 2012, which commemorates the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the meeting. The appeal launched by Archbishop Pietro Sigismondi, Secretary of the S.C. de Propaganda Fide and President of the Pontifical Mission Societies for World Mission Day 1962 (reported by Fides Agency on August 22, 1962) states inter alia: "World Mission Day, which aims to stimulate the enthusiasm and generosity of Catholics in order to offer any kind of aid to the work of missionaries, coincides this year with an event of historic significance, around which the attention and universal interest revolves: the Second Vatican Council. In this same year on May 3, the promulgation of the Motu Proprio "Romanorum Pontificum" by Pius XI celebrated 40 years, which is the Magna Charta of missionary cooperation organized and focused in the Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith, S. Peter the apostle for the native clergy, Holy Childhood and the Missionary Union of the Clergy. (...)
The Ecumenical Council is in fact – according to the Holy Father’s words - an event whose luminous irradiation in the world announces sweet promises for the apostolate in the Missions; for it is to be hoped that the faithful will find in the next solemn Ecumenical Council, major impulse and stimulus to pursue the spread of the Catholic faith. (...)
Therefore, while in Rome, mother and teacher of all peoples in the largest temple of Christianity, the Bishops gathered from all parts of the globe, people of every color, white, black and yellow, speaking all languages, but united in the universal Latin language, brothers in Christ and in the episcopate, members of the same Episcopal College, forming a single thing under the infallible guidance of the Successor of Peter, will offer the great and moving vision of catholicity and unity of the Church, the faithful of all the world in the annual missionary day, crossed by an uncontrollable shiver of joy, enthusiasm, admiration and generosity, with renewed apostolic zeal, will raise prayers to the Lord and give their contribution of love." (SL) ( Agenzia Fides 19/10/2012)