Cardinal Fernando Filoni will be wrapping-up his mandate as Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, a responsibility that will be taken over by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, Archbishop of Manila. Pope Francis appointed Filoni, now Prefect emeritus, as Grand Master of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, beginning December 8th.
Speaking to the Vatican’s Fides News Agency, Cardinal Filoni said, "In recent years I had the opportunity to meet, both in the Congregation and in various countries, in about 50 pastoral trips to Asia, Africa, Latin America, Oceania, the beautiful face of local churches. I saw the commitment to translate the Gospel into the needs of the multitude of faithful of every culture and language, entrusted to the care of the Congregation. The help and support of Bishops, priests, men and women religious, catechists, has been and is fundamental in this missionary work. I appreciated all its richness, ranging from spiritual formation, to moral education, to intellectual and scholastic formation, and very concrete social assistance to people in situations of migration, persecution, violence and discrimination. It is a work that we entrust and give back to God, who is the author".
He continued saying, "the commitment to the higher formation of priests, seminarians and women religious, through the various Colleges in Rome, and everywhere, in Seminaries or religious institutions must remain tireless; just as it is essential to update and train Seminary professors to ensure an ever better quality of teaching. Equally important is the formation of those responsible for the Seminaries, Rectors and Vice Rectors, on whom the correct approach of priestly and religious life depends. The Congregation of Propaganda Fide organizes and supports this commitment".
Finally, Cardinal Filoni expressed his gratitude to “all those who have collaborated and continue to collaborate in this precious service. I would like to highlight with gratitude the great generosity of benefactors, of those who love missions and support them, both through prayer and through financial support. I believe that each of them, like every Christian, should feel part of this missionary work and feel the intimate gratitude because, through each of us, God carries out his mission and builds his Kingdom".