Year of Consecrated Life to start in October
New Apostolic Constitution on religious life expected
The Vatican has announced details of the Year of Consecrated Life, which will begin in October this year.
Cardinal João Braz De Aviz (above), the Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, announced this morning that the year would ‘embrace the future with hope.’
Pope Francis announced the Year of Consecrated life last November at a meeting with the Union of Superiors General and Cardinal De Aviz said it had been timed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican council.
“We believe that the Council has been a breath of the Spirit not only for the whole Church but, perhaps especially, for the consecrated life,” he said. “We are also convinced that in these 50 years consecrated life has undertaken a fruitful journey of renewal, not free, certainly, of difficulties and hardships, in the commitment to follow what the Council asked of the consecrated: fidelity to the Lord, to the Church, to their own charism and to the people of today.”
For this reason, he said, the first objective of the Year of Consecrated Life would be to ‘make a grateful remembrance of the recent past.’ With this positive outlook on the past, he continued, ‘we want to ‘embrace the future with hope’— the second objective. Although the crises that affect the world and the Church are also felt within consecrated life, Cardinal Braz de Aviz said women and men religious remain full of hope, based not on their own powers, but on trust in the Lord. As in him, he said, ‘no one can rob us of our hope.’
During the special year, it is expected the New Apostolic Constitution on Religious Life, updating Pius XII’s 1950 document, will be published.
The Year of Consecrated Life is expected to begin in October of this year, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the promulgation of Lumen Gentium (the Second Vatican Council’s constitution on the Church), which has a specific chapter dealing with consecrated life. The anniversary of the Council’s decree Perfectae caritatis, will be the occasion of the close of the Year, in November 2015.