Living the Jubilee, Being Witnesses of Hope

Encuentro para la Vida Consagrada

To speak of the Jubilee is to speak of something new, of a time of grace, to recognise God’s work in history, in the Church, in the life of the community and in each person. It is a time to put our trust in God again, to place in his hands all our efforts and our heart’s desire. The Jubilee is a call to reconciliation, to forgiveness, to unity, to the strengthening of fraternity, to care for one another, to the promotion of justice. 

A Jubilee is an opportunity to return to the fundamentals of our Dominican consecrated life, a propitious time to evaluate and improve our fraternal “quality of life”, prayer, study and preaching. All this will lead us to be bearers of hope, bearers of the Gospel of peace, walking together as a synodal Church. 

On the occasion of the Jubilee Year of the Order in 2016, Brother Bruno Cadoré, OP, reminded us: “Certainly, the future of the preaching of the Gospel of peace, the future of the proclamation that this world, as it is, is the place where God wants to make the seed of the Kingdom grow, will not be the result of strategic plans, however pertinent they may be. As Dominic wanted to make the Pope understand when he asked him to confirm the first fruits of his inspired work, the fire of the Gospel must first embrace the being of every preacher: they had to “be” Preachers. It was this inner fire that one day gave each of us the audacity to ask for the grace to consecrate our whole life to the Word. It is the same fire that can give us the restlessness, the sleeplessness, the hope that, from town to town, the name of Jesus Christ will be the name of a brother and a friend who comes to live in familiarity with men, inspiring all to trust in him (ST III q 40 resp3).”

This past 1 to 4 February, the Dicastery for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life organised an opening congress in preparation for the Jubilee 2025, with the theme: “Pilgrims of hope, on the way of peace.” All consecrated people are invited to enter into these four movements: to believe in hope, to believe in charity, to walk with the strength of faith and to witness to hope by being promoters of peace. This is the good news that consecrated men and women can share with others: to be a sign and presence of hope in a world where there is so much pain and suffering. As men and women of faith, with “tenderness and courage”, we are called to share the joy of believing in a living God, the incarnate companion on the way to those who struggle for a better world. Our own life in communion is a living witness to the Gospel of “brotherhood”, “strengthening the bonds that unite us as brothers and sisters in Christ”. Then it will be said to us: “How beautiful are the feet of those who proclaim peace, the Good News” (Rom 10:15). May this Jubilee of Consecrated Life nourish our hope and sustain our commitment to promote a culture of peace, solidarity and mutual care.

Fray Leoncio Vallejo Benítez, OP.

Convento Santo Domingo Ra’ykuera

Asunción, Paraguay

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