(AsiaNews) - Just like 50 years ago, and the long procession of bishops
(pictured) that even visually marked the beginning of Vatican II, on Thursday,
October 11, a long procession of bishops will mark the beginning of the Year of Faith.
They are answering the call of Pope Benedict XVI, who wanted to unite the start of this special year with the commemoration of the beginning of the Council. "The choice - said this morning .. Bishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization - is no accident. The Council anniversary is an opportunity to return to the event that had a decisive mark on the life the Church of the twentieth century and to test the impact of its teachings over the past decades and the next year that will mark the Church's commitment to the new evangelization. "
"The fiftieth anniversary of the Council, therefore, deserves to be not only remembered, but celebrated by the Church. The Year of Faith is a good opportunity to revive the faith of believers and animate them with a renewed spirit of evangelization more convinced than ever. "
"In light of this, the celebration of the inauguration of the Year of Faith deserves to be explained, which is strongly impregnated with signs that evoke the Council." At the opening of the rite excerpts will be read from 4 conciliar constitutions that have marked the work of the council and renewal in the life of the Church. Then, the long procession in the collective back to October 12, 1962 will be repeated. It will be composed of all the bishops taking part in the solemn celebration. These include the Fathers taking part in the Synod, all the presidents of Episcopal conferences in the world and 14 Council Fathers. "70 Council Fathers who are still alive had been invited, but old age or health problems have prevented them from being with us. They wrote, however, confirming their participation and their spiritual support at this moment in the life of the Church. "
"The procession will be followed by the enthronement of the Word of God. This also recalls a significant moment in the work of the Council when, in formal sessions in the basilica of St. Peter, the Holy Scriptures was processed and placed at the center of the gathering to reconcile and remind everyone that service to the Word of God remains the center of the Church. The same lectern and the same Holy Scriptures of the work of the Council will be used. At the end of the Eucharistic celebration there will be a further sign to indicate that the Council teaching is still relevant nad merits further study".
And those Messages to the People of God, which Paul VI consigned at the closing of the Council will be once consigned by Pope Benedict XVI to different categories of people. To Governments, the Men of science and thought, to Artists, to Women, to the Workers, the Poor, the Sick and Suffering, the Young and Catechists.