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Congregation for the Clergy
General Directory for Catechesis

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  • PART FIVE CATECHESIS IN THE PARTICULAR CHURCH
    • CHAPTER IV The organization of catechetical pastoral care in the particular Churches
      • The co-ordination of catechesis
        • Catechetical activity in the context of new evangelization
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Catechetical activity in the context of new evangelization

276. If catechesis is defined as a moment in the total process of evangelization, the problem inevitably arises of co-ordinating catechetical activity with the missionary activity which necessarily precedes it, as well as with the pastoral activity which follows it. There are in fact "elements which prepare for catechesis as well as those deriving from it". (311) In this respect, the link between missionary proclamation which seeks to stir up the faith, and initiatory catechesis, which seeks to deepen its roots, is decisive for evangelization. This link is, in a certain sense, more evident in the mission ad gentes. (312) Adults converted by the primary proclamation enter the catechumenate where they are catechized. In situations requiring "new evangelization", (313) co-ordination becomes more complex because ordinary catechesis is, at times, offered to young people and adults who need a period of prior proclamation and awakening in their adherence to Christ.

Similar difficulties arise with regard to the catechesis of children and the formation of their parents. (314) At other times forms of ongoing catechesis are applied to adults who, in fact, reguire a true intiatory catechesis.

277. The current situation of evangelization requires that both activities, missionary proclamation and initiatory catechesis, be conceived in a co-ordinated manner and be given, in the particular Church, through a single programme of evangelization which is both missionary and catechumenal. Today, catechesis must be seen above all as the consequence of an effective missionary proclamation. The directives of the decree Ad Gentes—which sets the catechumenate in the context of the Church's missionary activityremain a particularly valid reference point for catechesis. (315)




311) CT 18d.



312) RM 33.



313) Ibidem.



314) Cf. CT 19 and 42.



315) Cf. AG 11-15. The concept of evangelization as a process structured in stages was analysed in Part I, chap. I. The process of evagelization.






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