HomeDiocesan ReportsLegazpi diocese declares 2024 as ‘Year of Participation’

Legazpi diocese declares 2024 as ‘Year of Participation’

Bishop Joel Baylon of Legazpi has declared 2024 as the “Year of Participation,” with the aim of “deepening the engagement of the laity in our diocese’s life and ministry.

In a pastoral letter issued Dec. 10, the second Sunday of Advent, he specifically highlighted three aspects of participation: in the mystery of God, in the liturgy, and in mission.

These facets, as the bishop expressed, “apply to our individual and diocesan journey in faith and ministry.”

Explaining the first aspect, he said the faithful’s participation “begins with responding to God’s call to communion, a grace we experience and respond to, starting with our baptism.”

On the other hand, he emphasized that “active” participation in the liturgy, especially during the Sunday Eucharist, is vital.“

It strengthens our faith and embodies the Church’s desire for the laity’s full, conscious, and active involvement in liturgical celebrations,” Baylon expressed.

Regarding participation in the mission, the bishop stressed the Christian’s calling to evangelize.

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“This includes embracing our identity and mission as laypersons, actively involved in proclaiming the Gospel and serving the Church,” he said.

To make the celebration meaningful, the bishop tasked the Diocesan Council of the Laity to take the lead in promoting participation through “guidance, involvement and commitment”.

Baylon encouraged the clergy “to promote inclusive pastoral decision-making and transparency”, while lay leaders are called “to actively participate in parish activities and decision-making processes”.

He also pushed for the empowerment of families, youth, and the poor, encouraging their active participation in ministry, “not just recipients of it”.

“Encourage couples to strengthen the Church’s family ministries, guide the youth in faith and leadership, and support the poor towards empowerment and active church participation,” the bishop said.

“Encourage the laity to contribute time, talent, and resources to the Church’s mission, fostering a spirit of generosity and commitment to the Church’s growth and societal transformation,” he also said.

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