Shi Jia Zhuang (Agenzia Fides) – To intensify the formation of faith in the light of the Holy Father’s Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, is the priority for many Catholic communities in mainland China for the new pastoral year which has just started. According to information gathered by Fides, the need emerged during the formation sessions and meetings of the various Catholic groups that were held recently, in the last period of the Chinese New Year holidays, in order to define the 2014 pastoral plans.
Among these initiatives, we mention the formation course on Sacred Scripture in the light of the Evangelii Gaudium which from 8 to 14 February brought together 121 young lay people active in the 32 parishes of the Diocese of San Yuan, in Shaan Xi province. The 94-year-old Bishop Emeritus, Mgr. Zong Huai De, together with the current Bishop, Mgr. Han Ying Jin, encouraged the young participants to study the Word of God putting it into practice in their lives and to be the salt and light of society. The parish of St. Josephin Bao Tou, Inner Mongolia, promoted the same type of course from February 9 to 14, with a particular emphasis on the Sacraments.
The Bible study group of Lourdes in the parish of the village of Xiao Han, in the Diocese of Tian Jin, celebrated five years of its foundation during the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, on February 11, and in fact confirmed that the study of the Word of God continues to be a priority in 2014.
During the General Assembly of the Diocese of Hai Men, the Bishop presented the Evangelii Gaudium to priests, religious and lay faithful. He then highlighted the issues of education, vocation, charitable works as main commitment of the new pastoral year .
In order to improve their education in faith "and to progress in an even more effective evangelization and pastoral care in 2014", 186 lay leaders of basic ecclesial communities of the diocese of Xian, in the province of He Bei, met in Cathedral on February 7. (NZ) (Agenzia Fides 19/02/2014)