Warsaw (Agenzia Fides) - In the first week of July, the Warsaw Missionary Formation Center hosted the School for second-degree missionary animators, organized by the Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS). The course was attended by 47 people from 19 Polish dioceses, among them seminarians, priests, men and women religious and, for the most part, lay people (31). This year's course is part of the Extraordinary Missionary Month of October 2019 context, announced by Pope Francis to reawaken the missionary conscience in all and promote concrete mission projects. In this perspective the participants got to know various initiatives such as lay missionary volunteering, projects to support young Churches, national initiatives in favor of vocations ...
"The aim of the course was to train people who will subsequently engage in the missionary animation of their communities", explains Fr. Maciej Będziński, National PMS Secretary in the note sent to Agenzia Fides. "Those who want to help the missions must be first and foremost a person of prayer and work in the Church and for the Church", stressed Fr. Tomasz Atlas, National Director of the PMS, during the Mass he presided at the beginning of the course.
"For me the most important thing about our meeting is the common work among priests, consecrated and lay people in favor of the missions, and not to think that only priests or consecrated persons are in charge of proclaiming the Gospel. I am happy to see here also the young volunteers who give testimony with joy and passion", said Ms Marzena of the archdiocese of Stettin. "I was struck and fascinated by the theme of the media used to promote missionary themes using mobile phones. As from today I will be working on making videos to evangelize on the Internet, because I am convinced that in no other way can we reach people's hearts so quickly and professionally", said Mr. Henryk of diocese of Opole.
The 5-day-course included not only lessons but also moments of prayer, knowledge of the cultures of different continents, sharing and missionary testimonies. In conclusion, the participants received a diploma.
The first edition of the school for missionary animators was held in 1997, the following in 1999, and since 2002 it has become an annual appointment. To date, a total of 1,200 animators have participated. (mk/pdm) (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 5/7/2019)