Freiburg (Agenzia Fides) - "With this letter we renew the missionary mission in the name of Jesus, to respond to God's call for your life! We count on you, Christ counts on you and the whole Church is with you to walk the path of pastoral and missionary conversion. Be assured of our prayer and our blessing and ‘go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature’ (Mk 16:15)". This is the invitation to all the baptized in the letter of the Swiss Bishops, published on 1 October, during the opening celebration of the Extraordinary Missionary Month of October 2019, which took place at the Baptistery of Riva San Vitale in the Canton Ticino, the oldest baptistery in Switzerland (see Fides 19/09/2019).
The Bishops address "each one of you, dear brothers and sisters", and although they wish this message to reach the largest number of baptized, at the same time they would like it to be considered "very personal". "Do you know that with your baptism you have become new creatures and that you are one person with Jesus Christ? He himself did not stop calling and sending women and men, and before reaching his Father, he entrusted you with a mission like the whole Church. The mission of the envoy is no different from the mission of Jesus himself. As successors of the Apostles, we want to proclaim today that this message addressed to us by Christ is urgently topical and concerns you, sent on mission throughout the world, starting from where you are".
According to information sent to Fides by Missio Switzerland, the participants in the opening liturgy of the Extraordinary Missionary Month were led by six Bishops, representatives of the linguistic regions, and by deacon Martin Brunner, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies. The faithful had the opportunity to renew their baptismal promises by drawing water from the historic baptistery. The water of the baptistery was then sent to the parishes of the various municipalities, inviting local communities to renew their baptism and be missionary disciples. At the end the Bishop of Sion, Jean-Marie Lovey, and President of the Working Group of the Extraordinary Missionary Month, announced the publication of the letter of the Swiss Bishops' Conference, addressed to all the baptized in the country. (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 3/10/2019)