Lent is “time to acquire a renewed missionary impulse”

Bispo do Algarve hopes that this Lent and the next Easter can result in "a more fraternal and more missionary diocesan Church"

D. Manuel Quintas, Bishop of the Algarve, emphasizes, in his Lenten message, that this is “a privileged time to acquire a new renewed missionary impulse”, in a year dedicated by the Portuguese Church to the mission. 

The Bishop emphasizes the importance of "witnessing the saints and martyrs of the mission", of investing in Christian formation, in addition to dedicating "more time to the personal encounter with the living Christ in the Church, through participation in the Eucharist, even on holidays » and of «listening to the word of God and personal, family and community prayer, without forgetting missionary charity, embodied in material help in favor of the immense work of evangelization and Christian formation in the most needy Churches».

In the context of this last aspect, the prelate announces that this year's Lenten resignation of the Algarve Christians is intended to "answer a request from the Dehonian missionaries in Angola", present in the Dioceses of Viana and Luena, to "support works related to education and to the social sphere”.

“I urge you to be generous in contributing to this fraternal sharing, as an expression of our ecclesial communion with these two missionary Churches,” adds the Bishop.

D. Manuel Quintas says that Christians are invited to "assume the mission of Christ, in order to bring the Gospel to all".

“The time of Lent once again reminds us of the path of conversion that we are called to take, in order to celebrate the central mystery of our faith: the passion, death and resurrection of Christ! A privileged time of listening to the word of God, which the Church offers us daily and of accepting his proposals taken as a path of conversion», reads, also, in the message.

«When we no longer illuminate our lives with the paschal light of Christ and we lose the horizon of the Resurrection, the logic of everything and immediately, of possessing more and more is imposed, leading to a situation of rupture in communion with God, with others and with creation", he continues, warning that "greed, excessive ambition for well-being, disinterest in the good of others lead to the exploration of creation (people and environment), driven by insatiable greed, which considers all desire as a right and will end up destroying even those who let themselves be dominated by it».

The Bishop of Algarve invites us to restore the "physiognomy" and "heart of Christians, through repentance", "conversion" and "forgiveness", so that we can "live all the richness of the grace of the paschal mystery".

D. Manuel Quintas recalls that “the search for exterior and interior silence, the intensification of prayer, the practice of solidary fasting, almsgiving and fraternal sharing constitute a common reference and criterion for evaluating the effectiveness of the path of Lent conversion”.

“As Pope Francis proposes to us, we must fast, to learn to change our attitude towards others and to creatures, that is, to move from the temptation to satisfy our greed, to the capacity to suffer for love, and fill the emptiness of ours. heart; pray, to know how to renounce idolatry and the self-sufficiency of our self, and declare ourselves in need of the Lord and his mercy; giving alms, to get out of the folly of living and accumulating everything for ourselves, with the illusion of ensuring a future that does not belong to us».

“This journey of conversion will also provide us with the joy of the project that God has placed in creation and in our hearts: the project of loving Him, our brothers and the whole world, finding in this love the true happiness», he explains.

D. Manuel Quintas, who this evening presides, at 21 pm, at the celebration of Ash Wednesday in the Cathedral of Faro, hopes that this Lent and the coming Easter will result in "a more fraternal and more missionary diocesan Church".