LETTER OF JOHN PAUL II
TO CARD. MILOSLAV VLK
ON THE OCCASION OF A MEETING OF BISHOPS,
FRIENDS OF THE FOCOLARE MOVEMENT
To my Venerable Brother
Cardinal Miloslav Vlk
1. With joy I spiritually join you and the Bishops who are friends of the Focolare Movement, and who are taking part in the Meeting which is currently being held at the Mariapolis Centre in Castel Gandolfo on the presence of the Risen Christ, the vital principle of the Church.
I extend my cordial greeting and good wishes to each of you. A special thought is directed to Ms Chiara Lubich, renewing to her the expression of my esteem and recognition of the testimony to the Gospel that the Movement brings to many parts of the world.
2. That providential initiative, which fits admirably into the context of the year dedicated to the Eucharist, will surely be for all a font of renewed apostolic vitality and of missionary boldness in the face of the many social and religious challenges of our time.
In effect, during these days of study and of prayer it is your common intention to discern the most appropriate ways for witnessing to the presence of the Risen Christ, centre of the Church, in today's society.
Dear and Venerable Brothers, always contemplate with ardour Jesus' life in the mystery of the Eucharist; following his example, be ready in every circumstance to be made instruments of mercy and of communion. The secret to an effective apostolate is the crucified and Risen Lord, whom we adore in the sacrament of the Eucharist. In order to be eloquent signs of his love and instruments of his peace everywhere, as you well know, all are asked in the first place to cultivate an intimate and constant familiarity with him. From intense participation at the Eucharistic Sacrifice comes the spiritual energy necessary to bring to completion every good project.
3. I entrust you, Venerable Brother, and the Prelates participating in the Symposium to the protection and the intercession of the Virgin Mary. May she guide you on the path of holiness. To that end, I assure you that I remember you in my prayers, invoking for you a copious outpouring of grace and heavenly comfort, while from my heart I impart to you a special Blessing, which I willingly extend to the faithful entrusted to the episcopal ministry of each of you and to the entire Focolare Movement.
From the Vatican, 19 February 2005
JOHN PAUL II
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