San Josè (Agenzia Fides) - "I dream of an America that is more and more 'outgoing', that promotes the mission ad gentes and inter gentes first of all from the particular Churches. I dream of greater missionary cooperation between the churches of America, and from there to the world". This was stated to Agenzia Fides by Father Jafet Peytrequín, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS) of Costa Rica and Executive Secretary of the Missionary Commission since 2019, elected - on July 25 - as the new continental coordinator of the PMS of America. Father Peytrequín succeeds Father Mauricio Jardim, recently appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Rondonópolis/Guiratinga. He has a degree in Missiology from the Pontifical Urbaniana University, a master's degree in Educational Sciences and a doctorate in Practical Theology from the Pontifical University of Salamanca. In addition, Father Peytrequín was director of the Faculty of Theological Sciences of the Catholic University of Costa Rica from 2016 and 2021.
"I was appointed as National Director of the PMS in Costa Rica - he says - in 2019, Extraordinary Missionary Year. After preparing the special celebrations that year, we were confined due to the pandemic, so we had to reinvent ourselves and begin to take better advantage of virtual resources. All this turned out to be a great challenge, since the animators did not feel prepared for such a radical change. The challenge made us grow, and today it has allowed us to have better communication between the various Societies, their secretaries and the animators". Regarding the role of continental coordinator of the PMS of America, he comments: "Thanks to the selfless work of the previous coordinators, it was possible to effectively and effectively link the various national Directions of the continent. Today we have a continental communication and cooperation network that help make better use of resources and enrich ourselves with the contributions of each one. It is worth noting that in America, the American Missionary Congresses (CAM) have been an indispensable resource to contribute to local work, but also to offer contributions at a global level". "Right now - he continues - we are on the way to CAM6, which God willing, will take place in Puerto Rico in 2024. This is a privileged moment to ask ourselves important questions, such as what are the challenges that the socio-religious environment poses to the mission today? How are we called to carry out the mission in these times? How to promote the mission ad gentes of the particular Churches with new ardor?". For this, Fr. Ugalde observes that "it is important to work on a common language in which we have shared concepts. We need to take advantage of and integrate the work carried out by the missiological centers of the continent, and share all its richness. It is important that the PMS are integrated into the ordinary pastoral care of our countries and form part of their pastoral plans. It is worth insisting on the universal responsibility that we all have with the mission and promoting missionary cooperation from a joyful animation: all the Churches for the whole Church. It is also important to make the mission visible in the person of the missionaries, and to show 'a mission with a face.' And he concludes by recalling that "today we are also being called to return to the synodal essence of the Church, which had its origin precisely as a result of the missionary impulse, in order to build a Church People of God in which we all feel co-responsible with the missionary task". (EG) (Agenzia Fides, 3/8/2022)