ASIA/PHILIPPINES - "Year of the poor" and new evangelization: Bishops in assembly after the Pope's visit

Monday, 19 January 2015

Manila (Agenzia Fides) - The Bishops of the Philippines gathered in Manila for the Plenary Assembly of the Bishops' Conference. As Fides learns, the meeting will last until January 22 and the new evangelization and the "Year of the poor", proclaimed by the local Church for 2015, will be the main issues.
"Of course we will look at these urgent needs in a different light after the Pope’s visit", explained to Agenzia Fides Fr. Melvin Castro, Secretary of the Commission on Family and Life of the Catholic Bishops' Conference. "Among the Bishops, among the clergy and the faithful, there is a great enthusiasm for what Pope Francis donated to our Church. The Pope received spiritual energy from the crowd of faithful who welcomed him, and our Church in the Philippines received great consolation and strong enthusiasm to live and profess its faith, thanks to Pope Francis presence and words", continues Fr.Castro.
"The Pope – he remarks - showed us a model of Church which is attentive towards the poor. This approach will have a strong impact in the long term in the Philippine Church. The poor teach that man is worth for what he is, and not for what he has".
Fr. Castro also notes the impetus given to the Filipino laity, that after the Pope’s trips, "will bear fruit of a greater involvement in pastoral care, especially for families and young people". With regards to the family, Fr. Castro noted: "We are happy that the Pope spoke out in defense of the family and stigmatized the ideology that comes from Western culture, which exports divorce, abortion, homosexual marriage, inviting us to promote and defend family with the traditional values of Philippine culture", concluded Fr. Castro. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 19/01/2015)