VATICAN CITY, JUL 10, 2004 (VIS) - Made public today was a Message from the Holy Father to Fr. Giorgio Nalin, superior general of the Rogationists of the Heart of Jesus on the occasion of the 10th general chapter of the congregation.
In the Message, dated June 26, the Pope joyfully recalls that on May 16 he canonized their founder, Hannibal Maria di Francia, "whom I defined as a 'distinguished apostle of prayer for vocations' and 'true father of orphans and the poor'."
"The mission of the Rogationists is found in the program indicated by 'Rogate', an imperative before which the perspective of faith for the harvest becomes a prayer that the Lord send many workers for it. This mission is more timely than ever at the beginning of the third millennium and calls for good and hard working apostles, the first of whom you must be and you wish to be. Therefore, you intend to rediscover and relaunch your charism, while analyzing carefully the needs of the Church and the world in the light of the perennial teaching of Jesus on the fundamental importance of prayer."
After emphasizing that the "harvest" is plentiful, and that it is necessary to have "workers of reconciliation, witnesses to the saving truth and builders of a true and stable peace founded on justice and forgiveness," John Paul II writes that, in the face of this great task, the first priority is to pray. ... Through prayer one discovers the primacy of the contemplative dimension of life and gains strength of faith which conquers the world. Today, after the fall of the totalitarian ideologies of the modern age, faith appears ever more clearly the anchor of salvation which is so necessary and urgent."
The Holy Father asks the Rogationists to work tirelessly "for the temporal and spiritual good of your neighbour, following the example of your founding father, through the education and sanctification of children and young people, evangelization, human promotion and helping the poor. ... The mission impetus is intrinsic to the identity of the apostles of 'Rogate'. Contemplating the 'harvest which is plentiful' and the 'laborers who are few' must open the soul to the desire for the universal evangelization of peoples. In this way, your holy founder wanted his sons to be available and attentive to the 'missio ad gentes' from the beginning."
MESS/EVANGELIZATION/ROGATIONISTS:NALIN VIS 20040712 (400)