As the world and society becomes more and more secularized, what it needs the most is the “courageous and credible testimony of the laity to bring the hope of the Gospel to all areas of society.”
That was the message from Pope Benedict XVI in a recent reflection on the laity’s responsibility to the Church and society.
“Co-responsibility demands a change in mentality, in particularly, about the role of the laity in the Church, who are considered not as ‘collaborators’ with the clergy, but as persons truly ‘co-responsible’ for being and acting of the Church,” the pope said.
The world needs a “a mature and committed laity,” which “can make its own specific contribution to the ecclesial mission with respect for the ministries and tasks that each one has in the life of the Church and always in cordial communion with the bishops.”
Laymen and women should also aim to “grow, with the whole Church,” he said, “in the co-responsibility of offering humanity a future of hope and with the courage to formulate demanding proposals.”
As the seasons change and fall comes into view, parish programs will once again begin in earnest. It is an important time for the laity to become involved in their parishes as “courageous witnesses of Christ” to spread the Gospel message into the communities in which they live during these challenging times in our nation.