What is the Goal of the V Encuentro?
The main goal of the V Encuentro is to discern ways in which the Church in the United States can better respond to the Hispanic/Latino presence and to strengthen the ways in which Hispanics/Latinos respond to the call to the New Evangelization as missionary disciples serving the entire Church.
What are the Objectives of the V Encuentros?
- Call all Catholic leaders in the United States to become authentic and joyful missionary disciples by giving witness to God’s Love with a prophetic voice by encountering their Hispanic brothers and sisters in Christ, therefore embracing the cultural diversity in the U.S. Church.
- Promote a vision of the Church in mission that develops effective pathways to invite, engage and form Hispanic Catholic youth, young adults, and families and ecclesial movements to live out their baptismal vocation. This includes the promotion of the vocation to the priesthood and consecrated life.
- Invite all Catholic leaders to engage and accompany Hispanic Catholics, particularly the most vulnerable and those who find themselves in the peripheries of the Church and society.
- Identify and promote opportunities for Hispanic Catholic pastoral leaders to serve in leadership positions in the Church and in the larger society, and increase the number of lay and ordained ministers directly engaged in the New Evangelization. This will require dioceses and parishes to receive new leaders and those seeking formation to become leaders.
- Stimulate a new wave of faith formation and leadership development initiatives that prepare Hispanic Catholics to share and celebrate the Good News of Jesus Christ and to become leaven for the Reign of God in society.
Hispanic Catholics are a blessing of God and a prophetic presence that has turned many dioceses and parishes into communities of faith that are more welcoming, vibrant, and evangelizing. We, the bishops, consider Hispanic ministry as an integral part of the life and mission of the church.
From: Encuentro & Mission: A Renewed Pastoral Framework for Hispanic Ministry
Spirituality of the Fifth Encuentro
The process of a V Encuentro is enlivened by the spirituality of missionary disciples who know how to joyfully reach out to others and to accompany them in their daily life and faith.
Jesus calls us to be good Samaritans who recognize the urgent call to respond to human suffering with compassion and generosity. He also teaches us how to reach out to those who live with the fear of feeling lost, hopeless, and confused on the way to Emmaus so they can recover the presence of the Risen Christ in their lives and His mission of making the Kingdom of God present among us.
Going out to visit people in their everyday lives. It means observing with the eyes of a disciple and raising awareness about the reality of where people live, especially those who suffer most and who need to hear the Good News of Jesus. It means letting ourselves wake up to this reality.
Approaching people to listen to them, to capture their emotions, and to be aware of what compels and worries them. It means letting us be moved by the tenderness that invites sympathy.
Asking people about their lives, worries, hopes, ideas, needs, and dreams. It also means inviting them to share their own experience, their feelings, and their ideas. It means listening genuinely, creating a space of trust and of safety that allows for the healing power of feeling listened to.
Communicating the gesture that helps others escape despair and being ready to evoke hope and joy. It means sharing the Word of God and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit in the Church to be able to understand, see, and feel our reality from the perspective of faith in the Resurrected Christ and in the promises of His reign of justice, love, and truth.
Receiving gratefully the trust and care of those who, even without knowing us, invite us by saying Stay with us.
Accepting the invitation to stay with them: Going to their houses, eating with them, continuing the conversation that began on the way, and experiencing a more intimate encounter and forming a friendship.
Breaking bread with profound gratefulness to God, for whom we live. It means looking for the closeness of the love of God and opening our eyes, our minds, and our hearts to His presence among us, both in our everyday lives and in the Eucharist. It is a different way of thinking, feeling, and acting, personally and pastorally.
Trusting in the faith of each person and motivating them to be missionary disciples full of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in their homes, communities, parishes, church groups, and dioceses. It means knowing that their everyday lives can transform their social environments.
Recognizing that our hearts burn with love and hope when we hear and share the Word of God with each other, especially with those who are more in need both of hearing it and of being listened to.
Deciding to get up and go out joyfully to encounter others. It means returning to the city and to the fields; it is witnessing the Passion of Jesus in the wounded and in the mistreated who, like the wounded person on the way, need a Good Samaritan. They need someone to find them, heal their wounds, and take care of them free of judgment, simply because they are a person in need.
Sharing our experience of encountering the Resurrected Christ with our community and challenging ourselves to continue the mission of living and building up the community and una ciudad que no se acaba, sin penas ni tristezas, ciudad de eternidad.